March 21, 2022

Overview of Proposed IRA Regulations Changes

Overview of Proposed IRA Regulations Changes

On February 24, 2022, the IRS published proposed regulations, REG-105954-20, which make significant changes related to required minimum distributions (RMDs), including death distributions, from qualified plans and IRAs. These regulations aim to provide additional guidance to law changes made by the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act of 2019 (SECURE Act). Here are some noteworthy highlights:


  • The regulations provide that a beneficiary who is a minor child of a deceased IRA owner reaches the age of majority on that child’s 21st birthday for the purpose of determining death RMDs, regardless of their state law definition of the age of majority.
  • For determining whether a beneficiary is not more than ten years younger than the IRA owner, and thus an eligible designated beneficiary (EDB), the actual dates of birth of the IRA owner and the beneficiary are used (and not the difference in attained ages for a year).
  • If the deceased Traditional IRA owner died on or after the required beginning date (RBD), and the designated beneficiary is NOT an EDB (e.g., most adult children), the beneficiary is subject to the ten-year rule. However, under these regulations, the beneficiary would also have to take annual RMDs based on the non-recalculated single life expectancy of the beneficiary by December 31 of each year for nine years (the first year being the year after death) and then, in the tenth year, deplete all remaining assets in the IRA by December 31 of that year.
  • The regulations require a disabled or chronically ill beneficiary to provide documentation or certification to the IRA plan sponsor by October 31 of the year following the year of death that they are disabled or chronically ill.
  • If the beneficiary failed to take the IRA owner’s undistributed RMD in the year of death as a timely death distribution, the regulations provide an automatic waiver of the IRS 50% excess accumulation penalty if the beneficiary takes the amount no later than the beneficiary’s tax filing deadline, including extensions, for that year.
  • Under the regulations, if separate accounting is not timely established and if the IRA owner has named multiple individuals as beneficiaries, and at least one of those beneficiaries is not an EDB, then the IRA is treated as not having any EDBs and, thus, the 10-year rule applies. An exception would be for the IRA owner’s minor children and multi-beneficiary trusts.


Even though the regulations are currently proposed, they are effective starting January 1, 2022. For 2021, the beneficiary must have made a good faith interpretation of the existing regulations and the SECURE Act when determining death RMDs.


PMC’s Calculating RMD Amounts, IRA Update and Understanding Death Distributions Options Webinars have been updated to reflect these New IRS proposed regulations. To register go to: