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I have a question, maybe someone here can help me out?
I began contributing to a Roth IRA three years ago, after many friends and family suggested I do it. Problem is, I had a lot of credit card debt, and didn't understand that paying that debt off should be my first priority. I recently withdrew the six thousand I have placed into the Roth, and used these funds to pay off all my c.c. debt. Along with the 6 grand, I also removed the meager earnings from the last three years, which came to a couple hundred bucks.

Now the question - do I have to pay the 10% early withdrawal penalty/tax on all the money, or just the earnings? I figure I was already taxed on the initial six thousand I invested, so I can't see why there would be a penalty to remove that portion. I am hoping I only have to pay tax and penalties on the earnings, which would be relatively minor.

Any help would be appreciated!

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