How To Cash Out 401K – To Pay Off Dept, Need money to pay off Credit Cards?
Here are few things you need to know about your 401K
First of all you hear a lot of people telling you not to touch your nest egg. If you do you will have nothing for your retirement. Well I am here to tell you otherwise and explain why and how to do it. The people that tell you not to touch your 401K plan do not have debt so they are not in your situation. In normal case you don’t want to touch your 401k Plan so that you can have nice retirement plan. If you are in situation that you have credit card dept or any other dept that is subject to interest rate than that should be #1 Priority!!! You will pay a lot more in interest than your retirement nest egg will ever grow.
The Truth is that it’s hard to cash out you 401K plan or in most cases impossible. There are however other options that are available that may or may not work for you. Before I get to your alternative options, below you will find a list of exceptions that government has created. If your 401k balance is less than $1000 you can check with your 401k administrator if you can just cash it out. otherwise keep on reading.
You should also be aware that Uncle Sam will take large chunk because your contributions were Pre-Taxed. Remember that your 401K is not Tax Free; it is simply tax-deferred. That means that if you have currently contributed with pre-tax funds you will have to pay taxes once you start taking distribution. To Give you idea on how much it will cost you to get your money back a created a example. Those numbers are only estimate to give is sense of what you are looking at, If you take a $20,000 hardship withdrawal to pay for your child’s college tuition, you will owe $6,000 in federal income taxes,$1,500 in State Taxes and an additional $2,000 to cover the early withdrawal penalty. You’ll be left with around $10,500 after Taxes. It might be little less or maybe little more depending on your state tax % rate.
Congress made provisions in the 401k rules to allow plan withdrawals in a limited number of hardship situations. These include:
- Un-reimbursed medical expenses for you, your spouse, or dependents.
- Purchase of an employee’s principal residence.
- Payment of college tuition and related educational costs such as room and board for the next 12 months for you, your spouse, dependents, or children who are no longer dependents.
- Payments necessary to prevent eviction of you from your home, or foreclosure on the mortgage of your principal residence.
- For funeral expenses.
- Certain expenses for the repair of damage to the employee’s principal residence.
You may qualify to take a penalty-free withdrawal if you meet one of the following exceptions:
- You become totally disabled.
- You are in debt for medical expenses that exceed 7.5 percent of your adjusted gross income.
- You are required by court order to give the money to your divorced spouse, a child, or a dependent.
- You are separated from service (through permanent layoff, termination, quitting or taking early retirement) in the year you turn 55, or later.
- You are separated from service and you have set-up a payment schedule to withdraw money in substantially equal amounts over the course of your life expectancy. (Once you begin taking this kind of distribution you are required to continue for five years or until you reach age 59 1/2, whichever is longer.)
IF you don’t meet any requirements above here are options you may have in getting money from your 401K plan:
- 1. The first and best option is to take a loan against you 401k Plan
This should best option and also your last resort as well. Most 401k plans set up by your employer will allow you to take a loan from you 401k account with low interest and best off all you will be paying yourself off. The only catch it that only 50% of your total accounts balance can be used for a loan. Your employer or your 401k plan administrator will set up payment plan usually directly subtracting from your pay check. To get this process started contact your employer or human resources so that they can get your paper work started. In most cases you will have a paycheck within 2 weeks.
- 2. If you are close to your employer you can ask them to fire you and then rehire you.
This options only works if you are in good terms with your employer. You don’t want to be stuck unemployed if your employer decides not to re-hire you. When you are no longer employed you are allowed to transfer your founds to a new 401k plan or IRA. Just contact company like fidelity and they will help you transfer the funds to IRA and you be able to take cash out.
- 3. Quit – Quitting your job to cash out your 401k is the worst option and I would strongly advise not to do it.
Quitting is the worst option but it’s a option. This process will let you transfer you Nest egg to IRA account but then you will be unemployed, with no income. So please don’t do it.
Besides those limited few options you have no other choices. The government created 401K so that you would not have to survive on social security once you reach your retirement age. What the government forgot to mention that you will be probably paying higher taxes in the future on your 401k distribution. That is why stop investing in your 401k and start investing in your self so that you would be Debt Free. Trust me nothing will feel better than being debt free person.
If you have any comments or questions please feel free to let me know and I will try my best to get your questions or concerns answered