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Tax reporting for IRA contributions, conversions & recharacterizations

Already have an IRA? Here are some brief explanations for how we report IRA contributions, conversions, and recharacterizations for tax purposes.

Contributions

Contributions for all types of IRAs—Roth, traditional, SEP, and SIMPLE—are reported on Form 5498.

Conversions

Conversions from a traditional IRA to a Roth IRA are reported on Form 1099-R.

The distribution code in Box 7 is determined by your age at the time you converted.

Recharacterizations

Recharacterizations from a Roth IRA to a traditional IRA—and vice versa—are reported on 2 different tax forms:

  • Form 1099-R reports the distribution.
  • Form 5498 reports the contribution.

If you contributed or converted in 2015 and recharacterized in 2016

You'll see an "R" in Box 7 of Form 1099-R.

Although the original contribution or conversion took place in 2015, the recharacterization will be reported for the 2016 tax year.

If you contributed or converted, and then recharacterized, all in 2016

You'll see an "N" in Box 7 of Form 1099-R.

If you recharacterize in 2017

Since the recharacterization takes place in the 2017 tax year, you'll receive the tax form that reports the transaction in early 2018.

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