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Small interest/dividend income and SS benefit is all I'll have this year, as I have taxed accounts to make up the difference in what I need.

Will there be any capital gains realized from those taxable accounts? That's income, too.

I'm looking at keeping the SS non-taxable, while putting some Traditional IRA money into a Roth by conversion.

Presumably, this means that your AGI (including Roth conversions and capital gains), plus any tax-free interest, plus 50% of your SS will be less than $25k (if not MFJ) or $32k (if MFJ).

If I am in a low tax bracket, basically living on SS for realized income, does it make sense to do a conversion?

Since you don't mention RMDs as a part of your income, presumably you will still be younger than 70 1/2 by the end of this year? If so, then I would say it depends on whether your RMDs are going to push you into a higher bracket when you have to start taking them. Here's an RMD calculator that you can use to figure what your RMDs could be: https://personal.vanguard.com/us/insights/retirement/living/... Please keep in mind, if your AGI (including RMDs) plus tax-exempt interest plus 50% of your SS income will push you above the $25k/$32k income levels, then your SS will become taxable, since those thresholds are not adjusted for income.

I'm confused about the 5 year rules.
I'm over 59 1/2 and the Roth was established more than 5 years ago.
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Is there a separate rule on the money I convert - does it have to be in the Roth account 5 years before it's tax free?


Since you are over 59 1/2 and the Roth account was established more than 5 years ago, all distributions from the Roth will be qualified distributions, so there is no 5 year clock needed for the conversions. It's only when the distributions are not qualified that the ordering rules, which include the 5 year conversion rule, come into play.

AJ
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