Making sense of RMDs
Get the answers to frequently asked questions about RMDs.
- Fidelity Viewpoints
- – 01/06/2023
Once you reach age 731 you're required to withdraw a certain amount of money from your retirement plans, such as IRAs, 401(k)s, and 403(b)s each year. That amount is called a required minimum distribution (RMD). Here are some answers to frequently asked questions to help you get started:
What's a required minimum distribution (RMD)?
What's the deadline for taking a required minimum distribution?
Do I have to take my required minimum distribution if I am still working?
If you continue working past age 73, you have to take a required minimum distribution (RMD) from your IRA. However, you may qualify for an exception from taking RMDs from your current workplace saving plan, such as a 401(k), 403(b), or small-business account, if:
- You're still working
- You do NOT own more than 5% of the business you work for
- You have an employer-sponsored retirement account with the business you work for
If you meet all the criteria above, you may delay taking an RMD from the account until April 1 of the year after you retire. Keep in mind that this does not apply to IRAs or other accounts you may hold with companies you no longer work for.
How do I calculate my required minimum distribution (RMD) from an IRA?
What types of retirement accounts have required minimum distributions (RMDs)?
After reaching age 73, required minimum distributions (RMDs) must be taken from these types of tax-deferred retirement accounts:
- Traditional, rollover, SIMPLE, and SEP IRAs
- Most 401(k) and 403(b) plans, including Roth 401(k)s2
- Most small-business accounts (self-employed 401(k), profit sharing plan, money purchase plan)
Can I withdraw my total required minimum distribution from one of my retirement accounts?
If you have multiple retirement accounts it's possible to take your required minimum distributon (RMD) from one, but it depends on the type of retirement account:
- For IRAs: You must calculate the RMD for each of these accounts separately, but you can withdraw the total RMD amount from one or any combination of accounts.
- For 403(b)s: RMDs must be calculated separately for each account, but the total amount of the RMD can be withdrawn from any one or a combination of your 403(b) accounts.
- For 401(k)s: RMDs must be calculated separately for each account and taken individually from those accounts.
Any distribution from an account that requires an RMD will count toward that year's RMD. Amounts withdrawn in excess of that RMD amount do NOT reduce RMD amounts in future years.
You are not required to take RMDs from your own Roth IRA and cannot satisfy an RMD requirement with a withdrawal from a Roth IRA.
How do I take a required minimum distribution (RMD) from a Fidelity IRA?
How do I set up an automatic required minimum distribution (RMD) from a Fidelity IRA?
It only takes a few minutes to set up automatic withdrawals for your required minimum distribution (RMD). To get started, visit automatic withdrawalsLog In Required and select the year for your automatic RMD withdrawals to begin.
Do I have to take a required minimum distribution if I inherited an IRA?
When you inherit an IRA, many of the IRS rules for required minimum distributions still apply. However, there may be additional rules based on your relationship to the original owner. Learn more about the RMD rules for inherited IRAs that apply to you.
How are required minimum distributions (RMDs) taxed?
Can I lower my taxable income with a qualified charitable distribution (QCD)?
If you are looking for ways to lower your taxable income, you may want to consider donating your required minimum distribution (RMD) to charity. A qualified charitable distribution (QCD) is a direct transfer of money from your IRA that's payable to an eligible 501(c)(3) charitable organization, which can also satisfy your RMD.3
Next steps to consider
Withdraw from your IRALog In Required
Process your RMD from your Fidelity IRA.
See your estimated RMDLog In Required
Let us help you take the guesswork out of managing your RMDs.
FAQs about RMDs
Get answers to frequently asked questions about RMDs.