Tax-Deferred Investments

What Happens If I Withdraw Money from My Tax-Deferred Investments Before Age 59½?

Withdrawing taxable funds from a tax-deferred retirement account before age 59½ generally triggers a 10% federal income tax penalty, on top of any federal income taxes due. (Distributions from Section 457(b) plans are generally not subject to an early distribution penalty; and the penalty for distributions from SIMPLE plans during your first two years of participation is 25%, 10% thereafter.) However, there are certain situations in which you are allowed to make early withdrawals from a retirement account and avoid the tax penalty. (Check your specific plan provisions to see whether a particular withdrawal option is available.)