When Can You Start Withdrawing From Your 401(k)?


Quick Answer

Most account holders must wait until age 59 1/2 in order to withdraw money from their 401(k) plan without being subject to a penalty, according to Forbes. However, an employee who leaves a job after age 55 has the option to make an early withdrawal without paying the penalty.

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Full Answer

An employee who continues working after age 59 1/2 may have access to funds from an old 401 (k) plan through a previous employer, but may not have access to funds in a 401(k) plan at his current place of employment, states About.com. Some plans allow for an "in-service" withdrawal, while others do not. To determine eligibility, the employee should contact the plan administrator. Normally, account holders must begin taking minimum disbursements from the plan at age 70 1/2, but some plans have other options for those who continue working beyond this age.

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