Wednesday, September 5, 2012

My financial questions: When do you have to stop contributing to a ROTH IRA?

As part of my simplify challenge I made a list of financial questions I needed to get answered. Once was getting clarification on when we would need to or should stop contributing to our ROTH IRAs. I want to emphasize that the information below is what I learned from various internet sites and in no way is professional financial advice.

That being said, the answer seems to be that under current law you can continue to contribute as long as you have earned income (not investment income) and don't exceed the maximum income limits. You also cannot contribute more than your earned income. Although you have to start taking minimum withdrawals at 70 1/2,  you can still contribute if you are earning income. You earnings on your investment would continue to be tax free.

I'm not sure what we will do while we are still earning income. Once we start taking withdrawals I imagine we will not continue to contribute to our ROTH IRAs. Of course the laws pertaining to them could change at any time and that would affect our decisions as well.

Does anyone know more about this?

UPDATE: See the comment below to see how wrong information on the internet can apparently be. I like the possibility that if I am not earning income in a few years as the older spouse then we can still put money into my ROTH. Ditto for not having to withdraw.


  1. You never have to withdraw from a ROTH IRA. You may contribute as long as you have an earned income (not passive) up to the amount you are contributing. I made 9,000 last year so I contributed 6,000 to my IRAand 3,000 to my husband's as a non working spouse. My husband could not contribute on his own since he did not have an earned income- but received his pension.
    Roth Ira isa way to insure that your children will get a retirement account tax free. They can keep it as a Roth after you are gone.
    Hope that helps.

    1. Thanks Janette! Just goes to show how the internet can have wrong info even on seemingly legit sites.


Week 12: One week until move & the pup's to do list

The pup's to do list is getting shorter as I picked up a copy of his vet records and a new address tag. Still have to change his microch...