Take the Pension or Roll into IRA? Lump Sum Distribution Options on Pensions

you’ve been working your job 20 to 30 years and now you have a big decision to make what to do with your pension do you take the monthly annuity payout for the rest of your life or do you roll that over into an IRA and take the chance of putting it in the right investments don’t deny it this is a very very big choice and you want to make sure you do the right thing before you make that choice let me give you three important things to consider before deciding what to do with your pension number one do you have a spouse most pensions provide a spousal benefit to where you’re going to get a payout for the rest of not only your life but your spouse the only downside to that is typically it’s a reduced amount that what you get if you just took it by yourself now after you pass on your spouse should get half of what you get if you decline the non spousal benefit but either way you need to figure out if the reduced benefit is enough for you and your spouse or if something happens to you is the fifty percent payout going to be sufficient enough monthly income for your spouse the second thing to consider is the amount how much are you getting per month and also how much are they offering you as a lump sum as an example one time I had a client who’s offered a hundred and eighty thousand dollar lump sum payout and he was definitely enticed it was the largest check that he would ever got in his entire life but the thing was that he was going to get a 2,000 $2,500 a month lifetime benefit and he was only like in his mid-50s so we ran the numbers and it was it made no sense to take the lump sum payout vice versa I had another client who has offered three to four thousand dollars a month as a lifetime payout in a lump sum that they were offering him was only between two to three hundred thousand dollars so it made complete sense to not take the lump sum to take the monthly benefit obviously the other thing to consider is whatever the monthly annuity pay that they’re offering is that even close enough to what you need per month to survive in retirement and the last thing that you need to consider when deciding what to do with your pension is do you want control do you want to have control on your money when you choose the annuity lifetime payout you’re getting a paycheck for the rest of your life but if you ever need more money if you ever need a larger check you no longer have access to that by rolling that over into an IRA you can then start getting the same paycheck that you get your pension you just have to make sure that you’re choosing the right investments that is key but if you do roll it over into an IRA and you do need more money for a medical expense or a vacation or whatever fill in the blank at least now you have access to get that money those are just a few things to consider as far as what to do with your pension if you have that choice the last thing that I want to throw out there are – is your kids your beneficiaries typically if you choose the annuity payout and you had children and both you and your spouse pass on the pension ends there is no benefit passed on to your kids so by rolling that into an IRA you now have built a potential legacy plan for them if you have any more questions about pensions or anything financial planning related you know where to find me this is Jeff rose certified financial planner we’ll see you soon