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Basically, I created a Roth IRA late in 2009, and by the end of the year had moved some money around between brokerage accounts to bring it up the maximum annual contribution of $5000. But, now, when asked on TurboTax what my IRA contribution was, I said $5000, and then it slapped me with about $200 more tax because my earned income was way below the amount that I contributed. I'm guessing this is that dreaded 6% excise tax due to excessive contribution...

The reason:
I am a graduate student receiving a stipend, which is not treated as hourly wages and for which there is no withholding. Further, I think it has to be filed as a taxable grant (because it's a "training grant" from the National Institutes of Health) on form 1099-G (right?), which places it in the realm of non-earned income, but income that is still taxable at the usual rate.
So, technically, the only earned income I received in 2009 was about ~$1800 worth, from a regular, withholding job earlier in the year. Since the fall, however, the ~$13000 that I received from the stipend apparently isn't earned income, but it is still taxed compensation.

The solution: ???
Any way around this narrow definition of "earned income"?
This seems like a raw deal to give people who spend 5yrs+ in school without earned income, because unless I pick up a teaching position somewhere down the road, 2009 is likely to be the last year I have "earned income" for some time.

Thanks! (And, I'm really new at filing my own taxes and the like, so the more explanation and detail, the better.)
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