Roth IRA Conversion

IRA Overview > Roth IRA Conversion

Is a Roth IRA conversion right for you?

Convert to a Roth IRA and your retirement funds have the potential to grow tax-free. Plus, you may not have to pay any income tax when you withdraw your savings in retirement.
May be a good move for:
  • Generating federally tax-free retirement savings
  • Withdrawing contributions without paying taxes1
  • Supplementing retirement savings in Traditional IRAs or employer-sponsored plans, such as 401(k) plans
  • Avoiding required minimum distributions (RMDs)
  • Leaving assets to your heirs
Roth IRA Conversion

Benefits of a Roth IRA conversion

Converting to a Roth IRA gives you the benefit no RMDs
Smart tax move — Contributions to a Roth IRA can grow federally tax-free,
potentially increasing the value of your after-tax assets.
Qualified withdrawals can be made without incurring federal income taxes
Flexible withdrawals — Eliminate paying federal income taxes on qualified withdrawals.2
Eligibility for a Roth IRA conversion is no longer limited due to income
No income requirements — With income restrictions for IRA conversions lifted indefinitely,
anyone is eligible to convert to a Roth IRA.
Roth IRA contributions can grow tax-free
Tax-free legacy — Not having to take RMDs means you can leave tax-free money
to your heirs.
A Roth IRA affords you many investment choices
Wide range of investment choices — Choose from a selection of stocks, bonds,
ETFs and mutual funds, often a broader choice than offered in employer-sponsored plans.
Important Considerations
Converting to a Roth IRA may not be ideal for everyone. Factors to consider include time, cost, projected tax liability and your overall financial goals and retirement income needs. To find out if a Roth IRA conversion makes sense for you, speak with a tax advisor3 before making any decisions.

Accounts eligible for conversion to a Roth IRA

  • Traditional IRA
  • Rollover IRA
  • Assets in tax-qualified retirement plans, such as 401(k)s, 403(b), 457(b)s, profit sharing and money purchase plans
Get help choosing the right IRA
Help when you need it
Is a Roth IRA conversion right for you? Use our online calculator to find out.

Required minimum distributions (RMDs)

If you are at least age 70½, federal tax law requires you as the owner of a Traditional IRA or employer-sponsored retirement plan such as a 401(k) to take an RMD each year. (The required beginning date may be later for employer-sponsored retirement plans, depending on your retirement date.) In any year that an RMD is due, federal tax law considers the first distribution to contain the RMD. A Roth IRA conversion requires you to take the RMD before converting your account. Ineligible funds converted to a Roth IRA will be subject to an excise tax and will be required to be removed as excess. You should review any planned financial transactions or arrangements that may have tax or accounting implications with your personal professional advisors.

Ready to get started?

Call us for assistance and we'll guide you every step of the way. We can help you convert any of these types of accounts:
  • For a Traditional IRA at Bank of America or Merrill Edge, we will help you open a Roth IRA and fill out the conversion form. Here's what you'll need
  • For an IRA outside of Bank of America or Merrill Edge, we will help you transfer your Traditional IRA and assist you with the Roth IRA conversion
  • For assets in a 401(k) from a former employer, we will help you transfer your assets from your 401(k) and assist with the Roth IRA conversion
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Need help converting to a Roth IRA?
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1 Contributions can be withdrawn anytime, federally income tax-free. Earnings are federally income tax-free if 59½, and account is held for at least five years or meets another exception.

2 Withdrawals made prior to age 59½ are subject to 10% early withdrawal tax.

3 3Neither Merrill Lynch nor any of its affiliates or financial advisors provide legal, tax or accounting advice. You should consult your legal and/or tax advisors before making any financial decisions.