If you cash the check, the penaltes and taxes are too steep. Your current employer does not HAVE to accept rollovers. But if they will, and you have a reasonable array of options, that is a good choice. If the amount were $28000 instead of $2800 I'd be emphatically in favor of putting it in an IRA and taking the trouble to manage it yourself. For $2800 it may not be worth the trouble unless you LIKE doing the research. Vanguard wants $3000 minimum to open an account, though they will accept less for an IRA. So for this amount, I'd check with the human resources department at your current employer. Will they accept the rollover? Next question is whether you like your investment choices there.If you don't, you can use the money in a rollover IRA. You can always put it in a rollover IRA and then, if you do not contaminate the account with your own contributions (you are allowed to put $2000 this year, more in future, into an IRA for yourself even if you have a 401k)then you still have the option in the future to roll the account into your then current employer's plan, if they are willing. Best wishes, Chris
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