Is the 10% Penalty on Early Withdrawal Waiver For 2022?

Is the 10 penalty on early withdrawal waived for 2022

Tapping retirement accounts too soon typically attracts penalties; however, a new law gives more leeway in withdrawing money from 401(k) accounts without incurring the usual 10% penalty fee.

The CARES Act permits you to withdraw funds for various reasons. But keep in mind that this doesn’t imply it’s wise to cash out retirement savings simply to avoid paying taxes.


A traditional IRA is a tax-deferred savings account available to anyone with earned income, although employees can benefit more through payroll deduction with an Simplified Employee Pension (SEP) or Savings Incentive Match Plan for Employees (SIMPLE IRA) plan offered by their employer.

As a general rule, withdrawals made from retirement accounts prior to age 59 1/2 are generally subject to an IRS 10% penalty in addition to taxes. However, under certain conditions this penalty may be waived, including financial hardship, higher education expenses or purchasing your first home. Heirloom IRAs are exempt from this rule while terminally ill individuals could withdraw savings without penalty from their inherited IRA if their condition is expected to lead to their death within 84 months from diagnosis date. A new rule coming out this year would allow this special dispensation under certain conditions – financial hardship being one such circumstance! A new rule coming out this year would allow terminally ill individuals access their savings without penalty from an inherited IRA when diagnosed 84 months from diagnosis date without dying.


401(k)s are employer-sponsored retirement accounts which invest the contributions made by employees on a pretax basis. When funds are withdrawn prior to age 59 1/2, typically an IRS penalty of 10% in addition to your regular income tax is levied against you.

These penalties exist to deter early withdrawal of savings when they might not be able to afford the additional tax burden, although certain circumstances do allow withdrawal without penalty, including financial hardship or purchasing their first home.

The new law also reduces the excise tax for failing to take required minimum distributions (RMDs) from IRAs and workplace retirement plans as stipulated in RMD requirements. Beforehand, excise tax was equal to 50% of the missed RMD but will now be capped at 25% effective for amounts distributed after 2023.


These accounts are designed to assist public sector workers, like teachers and certain non-profit employers, save for retirement in an easy and tax-efficient manner. They’re popular among government employees, medical professionals, librarians and self-employed ministers.

Predecessors to 401(k) plans predate them by about 50 years. When Congress first created them in 1958 as “supplemental pensions”, only insurance-based annuities could be invested in. But an amendment to Section 403(b) of the Internal Revenue Code allowed mutual fund investments as investments as well.

403(b)s differ significantly from 401(k)s by having shorter vesting periods and offering fewer investment options, although that trend is changing as some providers offer guaranteed lifelong withdrawal benefit and managed payout products to 403(b) participants.


457(b)s offer similar flexibility as 401(k)s and 403(b)s; you may contribute up to $20,500 annually with special catch-up contributions available to those nearing retirement age.

Your 457(b) offers you unique tax-advantages; withdrawals before age 59 1/2 do not incur a 10% penalty fee, however income taxes must still be withheld from withdrawals.

Contrary to an IRA, 457(b) funds may also be used for education expenses and home purchases without incurring penalties of 10%. Furthermore, you can withdraw money without penalty in emergency circumstances like funeral costs or home repairs related to natural disasters that don’t fall under insurance coverage; you simply must first self-certify your emergency meets government criteria first; SECURE 2.0 expands this list.

Other retirement accounts

Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) and Simplified Employee Pension (SEP) IRAs for small businesses provide employees with alternative methods of saving for retirement outside their workplace plans. Both accounts typically provide tax advantages; however withdrawals must be reported as income to tax authorities.

The IRS assesses a 10% penalty to anyone withdrawing early from traditional IRAs, employer-provided accounts like 401(k), 403(b), or their Roth equivalents before turning 59 1/2. However, in certain instances such as unreimbursed medical expenses exceeding 7.5% of adjusted gross income or when leaving employment due to military service, disability, or health crisis – penalties can be waived; an experienced tax professional can assist individuals with understanding which rules pertain specifically to them.

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