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TheOthermfa asks:

<< I hesitate to ask this, knowing how the IRS thinks, but what about earnings/gains in a mixed conversion/contribution account? If you converted, e.g., $2,000, and contributed $2,000, and found the account to be worth $8,000 one year later, how much could you withdraw without penalty? What if the two components and their gains could be specifically identified?>>

All Roth contributions, conversions and earnings are aggregated whether held in one or multiple accounts. At withdrawal, distributions are considered to come first from annual contributions, next from conversions on a first-in first-out basis, and last from earnings. In your example, the $2K distribution would be considered as coming from the $2K annual contribution. Take another $2K, and that comes from converted money. Take a third $2K, and that comes from earnings. The latter two withdrawals come under the 5-year and age 59 1/2 rules. Take converted money before it's been in the account five tax-years and when you're younger than age 59 1/2, and it will be penalized 10% (you've already paid the income tax). Take earnings, and you'll be taxed and penalized.

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