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<<Have you not heard of this before? I was wondering how prevelant this type of thing is (splitting an IRA and only taking approved early withdrawals from one of them).>>

The IRS has issued several rulings in the recent past taking the position that you are not required to aggregate IRAs for purposes of determining the amount of payments required to satisfy the "substantially equal" requirement. Normally I would say you don't need to worry if the IRS has said the same thing over and over, and said it recently. But this is a case where the position taken by the IRS seems to be contrary to what the Internal Revenue Code says. And that is probably why we have seen several rulings: the tax advisors are nervous about this, so they don't want to recommend it without getting a ruling. Given that the IRS has given the same ruling a number of times, it should be pretty easy (but not necessarily cheap!) to get your own ruling if you decide to go this way and the issue is still up in the air at that time.

KAT in Chicagoland
Tax Guide for Investors
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