Can my husband continue to make withdrawals from an inherited IRA if I pass away and he is not yet age 59 1/2?

I am 77 years old, and collecting Social Security. My spouse is 50 and the sole heir of my IRA. I make minimum required distributions from my IRA based on the life expectancy of the two of us. If I die, leaving the IRA to my spouse while he is not yet 59 1/2, can he continue to make IRA withdrawals without penalty? Can he take my Social Security monthly benefit or part of it right away? He will be entitled to a Social Security benefit based on his own work, but it is not as big as mine.

Social Security, IRAs, End of Life
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May 2017

Since you are 77 years old and already taking your required distributions, the IRS provides three options for a spouse after the passing of an account holder:

Option 1: Take the IRA into his own name (This option would NOT accomplish your goal of avoiding the 10% penalty).

Option 2: Take the IRA into an Inherited IRA and start distributions based on his life expectancy number.

Option 3: Take all of the money out of the IRA.

Option 2 and 3 would avoid the 10% penalty, but income tax of course would be due on any distribution.

So yes, your husband will be able to take distributions from the an IRA without penalty.

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