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One more question and hopefully good discussion/info for this board... since the old 401k rollover IRA is in my name... can I go ahead and do a backdoor Roth in my wife's name?

Yes, as long as your wife doesn't have any rollover or other traditional IRAs in her name, you can do a backdoor Roth for her immediately. The IRS looks at IRA accounts for each individual, even if they are married filing jointly.

My CPA friend said this should be OK.

Glad I agree with the CPA!

I called up TRowe today to discuss what exactly was needed to rollover my old rollover IRA and the guy was perplexed by this whole backdoor concept. He was actually reading some IRS pub aloud over the phone, and we ended the conversation with him unconvinced this was necessary, although he gave me some info on what I needed to do the transaction.

I'm surprised he did that - every CSR at a brokerage or mutual fund company that I've ever asked a tax related question to has made it very clear that they are not someone who is qualified to give tax advice, and have shied away from even discussing these topics. So the fact that he started reading out of an IRS pub (obviously talking about taxes) is very surprising to me.

I quickly contacted my CPA friend just to make sure I was doing the right thing.

Well, it's the right thing to do if you don't want to have to partially/fully convert the rollover IRA, but still want to be able have a way to make Roth contributions. Hope your CPA friend agreed.

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