DEFINITION of 'Heroes Earned Retirement Opportunities Act - HERO'

Legislation passed by Congress on May 18, 2006, that allows tax-free combat-related compensation received by military personnel to be considered taxable income for IRA contribution purposes. Military personnel also will be able to make IRA contributions based on combat pay earned from January 2004 to May 2006 - up to two years before the act became law.

BREAKING DOWN 'Heroes Earned Retirement Opportunities Act - HERO'

Previous to the act's creation, military personnel who primarily received combat pay as their main source of compensation would not be able to contribute to an IRA. Because combat pay is not considered taxable and IRA regulations stipulate that the maximum IRA contribution is the lesser of either $4,000 or the amount of taxable income received, the maximum contribution allowed was effectively zero dollars.

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