One piece of legislation which we are watching very closely is the SECURE Act (Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act of 2019).
This bill, which passed the House earlier this summer, is now expected to pass Congress and to be signed into law as part of the currently pending budget bill. Among other things, the bill would:
• Permit penalty-free withdrawals from retirement plans for expenses related to the birth of a child or adoption
• Increase from 70-1/2 to 72 the age for mandatory distributions from retirement plans
• Modify required minimum distribution rules with respect to defined contribution plans and IRA balances upon the death of the account holder requiring all distributions to be made by the end of the 10th year after death, except for distributions made to certain eligible designated beneficiaries; and
• Repeal the prohibition on contributions to a traditional Individual Retirement Account (IRA) by an individual who has reached age 70-1/2.
If/when this bill is passed, it will have serious implications for every individual who has a significant balance in their retirement account. Instead of a “stretch IRA”, which has been allowed for over 20 years, most beneficiaries of retirement accounts will be forced to withdraw the entire balance within 10 years of the death of the account holder. Consequently, every individual with a significant retirement plan should consider duplicating the “stretch IRA” by one of a few techniques, including a charitable remainder trust or an irrevocable life insurance trust.
We urge you to contact us to discuss how the SECURE Act legislation could impact your planning.