Should RRIF withdrawals be based on the younger spouse’s age? Nov 9th

All about Retirement Planning in Canada. Learn the ins and outs and get the latest news.
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Are Canadian pension buybacks worth it? Jul 20th

Ask MoneySense I am currently transferring my pension from a provincial to a federal government pension plan. I’m trying to determine if it is worth purchasing the balance of service and, if so, should I use my RRSP or TFSA funds. Here’s some relevant info: Service Credited: 7 years, 140 days.... More »

How to plan for retirement for Canadians: A review of Four Steps to a Worry-Free Retirement course + MORE Oct 26th

With November incoming and being Financial Literacy Month in Canada, it seems appropriate to devote this edition of the Retired Money column to a new Canadian DIY retirement course created by MoneySense’s “Making sense of the markets” columnist Kyle Prevost. Entitled 4 Steps to a .... More »
 retirement savings

In the years leading up to retirement, an updated financial plan is key: Experts + MORE Jun 29th

Retirement planning getting you down? There are always smart ways to plan the financial aspects of your retirement. In the years leading up to retirement, an updated financial plan is key: Experts - thestar.comContinue Reading On » How to become a digital nomad—and not g.... More »
 retirement planning

Why GICs are a good addition to an RRSP or a TFSA + MORE Feb 8th

It’s tax time again, which means Canadians may be thinking about tax-smart ways to invest to reduce their tax burden next year. Chances are, you’ve seen and heard more about guaranteed investment certificates (GICs) in recent months than ever before, and there are concrete reasons why. Read on t.... More »

Tax implications of making transfers between registered accounts + MORE Dec 21st

Ask MoneySense I had a locked-in pension, which I converted to a life income fund (LIF). I also took advantage of the ability to unlock up to 50% of the LIF within 60 days and put $120,000 into an RRSP. I did not receive any funds—so I was shocked when I received a T4RIF for $120,000, which means .... More »
I am wondering about the minimum RRIF withdrawal calculation. We are wondering if it would be beneficial to use the younger spouse’s age to result in a lower annual combined income. Can you explain the reasoning behind this?—Bernie

When can you convert an RRSP to a RRIF?

Registered retirement savings plans (RRSPs) are tax-deferred accounts meant primarily to fund retirement with withdrawals taken at that time. You can, though, take an RRSP withdrawal at any time. There are no restrictions on withdrawals, except if you have a locked-in retirement account (LIRA) that came from a pension plan transfer. The only drawback of RRSP withdrawals is that they are considered fully taxable income, with the exception of eligible withdrawals for a home purchase or post-secondary education.

You can contribute to an RRSP until the end of the year you turn 71. By no later than December 31 of the same year, you must cash in your entire account (not advisable), buy an annuity from an insurance company (not common) or convert your RRSP to a registered retirement income fund or RRIF (most common)…

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