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Roth IRAs

How to Undo a Roth IRA Contribution If Your Income Is Too High

You can still recharacterize a Roth contribution and move the money to a traditional IRA.

Question: I know I can't undo conversions from a traditional IRA to a Roth anymore. But what if I contribute to a Roth and then discover my income is too high? –J.C., East Lansing, Mich.

Answer: Even though the new tax law prohibits people from undoing a conversion they made from a traditional IRA to a Roth after December 31, 2017 (called recharacterizing), you can still recharacterize a Roth contribution and move the money to a traditional IRA.

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You can contribute to a Roth IRA if your modified adjusted gross income in 2018 is less than $135,000 if you're single or $199,000 if you file jointly. If you contribute to a Roth but your income is too high, you can ask your IRA administrator to move your Roth contribution (and any earnings on it, which your administrator will calculate) into a traditional IRA before the deadline to file your tax return for the year of your contribution.

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