retirement

Know your required minimum distribution

So, for example, a 74-year-old man using Table III would get a distribution period of 23.8 years. If his account balance was $50,000 on Dec. 31, 2013, he would have to divide $50,000 by 23.8, giving him an RMD of $2,100.84 for 2014.

Note that if you receive more than your RMD in any given year, you will not receive credit for the additional amount when determining distributions for future years.

Use Bankrate's calculator to figure your minimum IRA withdrawal.

A lot saved?

Be aware, too, that if your account balances are big enough, your RMDs could bump you into a higher tax bracket.

Because there are no income limits on a conversion, you might consider converting your traditional IRA to a Roth retirement account, which eliminates the need to take required minimum distributions.

Once you reach age 70 1/2, you are not allowed to roll over amounts that must be distributed in any given year, but you can roll over the rest of your IRA to avoid required distributions in the future. (You'll owe tax on any amount you roll over.)

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