Recent Relief Updates for a 2020 Required Minimum Distribution

Post Written by: Scott D. Michael, CFP®, AIF®

Things are changing so quickly these days – and that may affect your taxable income.

If you received a Required Minimum Distribution from one of your retirement accounts in early 2020, you may have the option to repay it (and reduce your taxable income).

The IRS has recently released guidance on the waiver of  2020 Required Minimum Distributions. IRS Notice 2020-51 has a few important things to know:

  1. Extension of 60-day deadline for rollover of certain distributions

The IRS has extended the 60-day rollover deadline to August 31, 2020 for individuals who have taken their 2020 RMD.

What does this mean? If you or a loved one received your Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) early in the first quarter of this year, you were likely locked in to keeping it even with major regulatory changes this year. According to standing IRS rules, any funds rolled over from an RMD must be rolled into the account within 60 days. The IRS previously extended that 60-day window to July 15, but that still didn’t really help those of us who took that rollover very early in the first quarter – we’re well outside of that 60-day window by now.

But because of this recently released notice, any RMD taken in 2020 can be rolled over so long as it’s completed by Aug. 31. There is no longer an applicable ‘within 60 days’ window.

The ruling even includes any RMDs taken by non-spouse beneficiaries, who may have received a distribution through an inherited IRA.

  1. Permitted repayments of RMDs previously distributed from an IRA

If you wanted to take back your RMD by rolling it back into your IRA or Roth IRA, you may have run into a snag because of IRS standards limiting rollovers to once each calendar year.

However, with this new rule, rolling back your RMD will not count against that rollover limit. Even if you took monthly RMDs, and now wish to return them, you can simply lump together the funds in total and it will not be considered exceeding the once-each-year limit on rollovers.

  1. Rollover Guidance for plan participants

If you’ve taken a Required Minimum Distribution from a qualified retirement plan, i.e. your 401(k), you can now roll those funds into any retirement account you’d like. (A distribution from an IRA must still be rolled back into the originating IRA account). Many 401(k) plans don’t accept rollovers so this update makes it easier for you to move the funds.


The rules are rapidly changing this year in light of the many policy changes to support our economy during the novel coronavirus pandemic. You can count on us to keep you in the loop and provide you with strategic options to keep your finances on track. Get in touch with us anytime by calling 717-393-9721 or emailing




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