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And of course, there are exceptions that can mitigate taxes on the exception.....You are allowed to withdraw the contributions you made to your Roth at any time without penalty or tax. And there is the first time homebuyer's exception, being disabled, and SEPP (Substantially Equal Periodic Payments), etc. See IRS publication 590 for details: http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p590.pdf

An SEPP 72(t) plan does not avoid tax on earnings in a Roth. It does avoid the 10% penalty.

http://www.fairmark.com/rothira/taxfree.htm

An SEPP 72(t) withdrawal doesn't fill any of the "qualified distribution" conditions at the bottom of the page. The earnings are taxable.

- Erik
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