Question of the Day – March 29

The professionals at Advanced Underwriting Consultants (AUC) answer the tax and technical questions posed by producers.  Here’s the question of the day.

Question:  My client is the beneficiary of her brother’s IRA.  The brother had begun taking RMDs prior to his death.  My client wants to stretch her IRA distributions.  What are her choices?

Answer:  If the decedent had reached the RBD at the time of death, a non-spouse beneficiary has the option to stretch over the longer of

• the beneficiary’s life expectancy, calculated using the single life table factor for the year after the decedent’s death, and reducing that factor by one for each calendar year that elapses thereafter, or
• the remaining life expectancy of the owner, determined using the age of the owner in the calendar year of his death, reduced by one for each calendar year that elapses thereafter.

Here’s an example of how the post-RBD stretch works:

Charlie, age 72, dies in 2013 with a sister, aged 74, named as beneficiary.  The Uniform Life Table factor for a 72 year old is 25.6.  The 12/31/2012 account balance would be divided by 25.6.  That amount would have to be distributed to the sister to satisfy Charlie’s RMD for 2013.  In 2014, the daughter will be 75 and the Single Life Table factor is 13.4.  Since the Uniform Lifetime Table factor for the decedent’s year of death minus one (24.6) is higher than the beneficiary’s Single Life Table factor, 24.6 will be used to calculate the 2014 RMD.  The beneficiary will subtract one from the 2014 factor to calculate the 2015 factor, and divide the 12/31/2014 account balance by 23.6 to calculate the 2015 RMD.

Have a question for the professionals at AUC?  Feel welcome to submit it by email.  We may post your question and the answer as the question of the day.