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My IRA accounts have been quite successful since they were opened with a rollover from a former employer's 401(k) in 2002. Attempting to convert any one of the Traditional IRA accounts to a Roth IRA would place me in the highest Federal and California tax brackets, i.e. 53% of the account's value would go to pay income taxes.

It seems to me that if you decide you would like to convert, and converting an IRA to a Roth-IRA is too tax-costly, you should bear in mind that you need not convert the entire IRA at once. So you might convert only as much as you can without leaving the tax bracket you are now in. Or maybe go up one tax bracket, but not all the way to the top.
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