How to Roll an IRA Into a 401K Plan

By: D. Laverne O'Neal

Rolling an IRA into a 401(k) is simple.

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There was a time when an IRA could be rolled, or converted, only into another IRA. That changed in 2001 when lawmakers allowed rollovers between different types of retirement account types. Still, not every 401(k) plan allows rollovers from IRAs. Your plan administrator can give you the skinny on rollover rules specific to your company plan. As of 2012, the Internal Revenue Service will not allow you to roll a Roth IRA into anything but another Roth IRA.

Step 1

Ask your IRA institution to make a trustee-to-trustee rollover to your 401(k). This might require completing distribution or account closing paperwork. If you are converting the entire IRA amount, the trustee might charge an account closing fee.

Step 2

Fill out the paperwork and submit it to the IRA trustee. Provide your name, contact information and IRA account number. Fill in the 401(k) bank or brokerage data, and the number of the 401(k) account to which you want to transfer funds.

Step 3

Check in with your 401(k) trustee to be sure the transaction took place. It might take seven business days or longer to complete the transfer. If you are concerned about the processing time, contact both trustees for an explanation.


About the Author

D. Laverne O'Neal, an Ivy League graduate, published her first article in 1997. A former theater, dance and music critic for such publications as the "Oakland Tribune" and Gannett Newspapers, she started her Web-writing career during the dot-com heyday. O'Neal also translates and edits French and Spanish. Her strongest interests are the performing arts, design, food, health, personal finance and personal growth.

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