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Question for the Money Doctors

Question submitted on Apr 3, 2012.

Question

My Aunt''s husband died and she of course inherited his IRAs. He was 64. She told the custodian to transfer them into her name but one of the custodians made it a "beneficial" IRA instead. She is only 61 and doesn''t want to take a distribution yet. However, I think she has to because it is a "beneficial" IRA. What can she do?

Answer

Your aunt has the choice of treating her late husband''s IRA as her own or keeping it in his name and treating her as a "beneficiary" of the IRA.  The latter would be useful if your aunt had been much younger than her husband or under 59 1/2,  However, since she is neither, it would be easier to treat the IRA as her own. 


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