Bank Deal: Earn 1.00% APY on an FDIC-insured savings account at Barclays Bank.
In writing about Roth IRA contribution limits (and how to fix Roth IRA contribution mistakes) over the past week, I came to realize that some readers might not be familiar with the term modified adjusted gross income (MAGI). As it turns out, this is a critical value for determining things like whether or not you are eligible to: (1) contribute to a Roth IRA, (2) deduct traditional IRA contributions, or (3) convert funds from a traditional (or SEP) IRA to a Roth IRA. Thus, it’s important that people understand what it is and how it is calculated.
Here’s my understanding of the situation…
In order to figure out your MAGI you first need to know what your AGI represents. In short, your AGI is your total income (including wages, interest, income from retirement accounts, capital gains, and alimony received) less certain “adjustments.” These adjustments include things like deductible IRA contributions, 401(k) or 403(b) contributions, alimony payments, health insurance premiums (if you’re self-employed), moving expenses, and interest on student loans (consult the IRS web site or a tax professional for a full rundown). Note that AGI does not reflect standard or itemized deductions. Nor does is it influenced by personal exemptions.
In order to arrive at your modified AGI, you then need to add back certain things like income that you exluded due to the foreign earned income exclusion, any deductions for foreign housing, interest income for series EE bonds that you may have excluded because you used the proceeds to pay for qualified educational expenses, any deduction that you may have claimed for student loan interest or allowable tuition expenses, employer-paid adoption expenses, and any deduction that you may have claimed for a traditional IRA contribution (note that employer plans, such as 401(k) and 403(b) contributions still reduce your MAGI). Also, if you’re age 70-1/2 and receiving minimum distributions from a traditional, these funds do not count against your MAGI.
As a final note, it’s important to keep in mind that funds being converted from a traditional IRA to a Roth IRA do not count against your MAGI even though they may be taxable.
- How to Become a Millionaire
- How to Get Out of Debt
- The Best Dollars I've Ever Spent
- How Our Estate Plan is Structured
- How We Paid Our Mortgage In Less than 10 Years
- Money Making Ideas
- How to Manage Your Asset Allocation with Multiple Accounts
- Consumption Smoothing - Save While the Saving's Good
- How to Save on Groceries
- How Much Life Insurance Do You Need?
- Eleven Great Books About Money
- Dave Ramsey is Bad at Math (692)
- Dish Network Customer Service SUCKS (534)
- $8,000 Homebuyer Tax Credit (429)
- Pay Off Mortgage Early or Invest? (424)
- How to Claim the First-Time Homebuyer Tax Credit (352)
- Termite Control: Sentricon vs. Termidor (325)
- How Much Should You Pay a Babysitter? (284)
- Ethanol Blended Gas = Lower Mileage? (272)
- Reduced Credit Limits? Share Your Experience (256)
- $15,000 Homebuyer Tax Credit (242)
- Buying Furniture off the Back of a Truck (228)
- Will Mac OS X Lion Kill Quicken 2007? (191)