No. of Recommendations: 1
* Should I rollover the 401(k) to Vanguard and into a Roth IRA? As I understand it, this is possible without penalty, although I'm confused as to how I can dodge the tax man on the contributions I made to the account on the front end, and then dodge him again on the backed with the Roth.

You can roll over the 401k to a "Rollover IRA", which is basically the same thing as a traditional IRA. From there, you can convert it to a Roth IRA if you'd like, but you will have to pay income taxes on the distribution amount. Many people do this in stages to maximize their tax bracket each year rather than taking it lump sum. Also, you will have to pay "estimated taxes" on this amount as well, so you don't get a free ride all the way until April 2006 if you convert this year.

I'll let the tax professionals take the 2nd one.

* Is an ING Orange account (at 2.35%) the best place to stash the emergency cash fund (the 3 months expenses)? Should that be diversified or reallocated somehow?

For convenience and ease-of-use, I haven't found anything better than ING Direct. Personally, I keep about $2,000 in my bank's savings account so I can have that money that day if I need to...I can't think of any emergencies that would require >$2k in CASH immediately, so the rest is socked away at ING Direct.

No need for it to be's FDIC-insured. You want stability of capital, so this isn't an investment, per se. It's simply a good place to park your money to preserve capital and earn some interest as well. As an alternative to ING Direct, Presidential Bank is still paying 2.75% for its checking account, but there are some minimum balance and direct-deposit requirements.

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