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Chapter 24. How to Avoid the Biggest Mis... > Retiring and Taking Money out of You... - Pg. 258

How to Avoid the Biggest Mistakes 258 Withdrawal Question #2:Can you get your money out of an IRA before age 59½ and not pay the 10 percent penalty? Answer:Yes. You can do this by taking your money out of the IRA in what the IRS calls "substantially equal payments." The major fact to keep in mind is you must continue receiving these equal pay- ments for at least five years or until you reach age 59½, whichever is longer. So, if you're 57 years old, you must take payments until age 62. (The rules in this area are tricky, so we suggest you reread Chapter 7, "Keeping Tabs on Your Account," and Chapter 18, "Cashing In or Out of Your 401[k].") Warning! If you intend to roll 401(k) money back into a similar plan, don't commingle these balances in your IRA with any other IRA money. If you do, you may give up the right to roll these funds back into a like-kind plan. Check with the plan administrator at your new employer; while most employers allow like-kind rollovers, not all do. (Check out Chapter 19.) Withdrawal Question #3:My new employer offers a 403(b) tax-sheltered annuity plan rather than a 401(k). Can I roll my 401(k) account from my previous employer into the 403(b) tax-sheltered annuity?