Amounts representing nontaxable portion of a balance in a retirement account. Also referred to as after-tax amounts
Basis comes from the sources which includes the following:
- Nondeductible contributions to traditional IRAs
- Roth IRA contributions
- After-tax contributions to qualified plans and 403(b) arrangements
- Contributions to HSAs
- Contributions to ESAs
If the participant or beneficiary repays a loan after a deemed distribution of the loan under section 72(p), then, for purposes of section 72(e), the participant’s or beneficiary’s investment in the contract (tax basis) under the plan increases by the amount of the cash repayments that the participant or beneficiary makes on the loan after the deemed distribution. However, loan repayments are not treated as after-tax contributions for other purposes, including sections 401(m) and 415(c)(2)(B).
Basis amounts are tax-free when distributed from the retirement account.
Failure to keep track of basis will result in the amount being taxed when distributed ( instead of the amount being tax free.
See “Additional Helpful Information” below for information about how basis is recovered
Additional Helpful Information
Individuals who make nondeductible contributions or rollover after-tax contributions to traditional IRAs must file IRS Form 8606, to report the after-tax credit to the IRS, and to keep track of the basis.
The Job Creation and Worker Assistance Act of 2002 (JCWAA) – which amended EGTRRA, provides that if a distribution from a qualified plan includes both after-tax (basis) and pre-tax amounts, any amount that is rolled over is deemed to include pre-tax amounts first. For instance, assume an individual receives a distribution of $50,000. $10,000 of this amount is after-tax assets. The individual rolls over $40,000. The $40,000 will be the pre-tax amount. If the individual rolls over $5,000, the $5,000 will be from the pre-tax amount.
Distributions from qualified plans include a pro-rata amount of pre-tax and post-tax assets. An exception applies to amounts accrued before 1987, which allowed the distributions of after-tax amounts to be segregated. Under this exception, an individual could choose to distribute just the after-tax amounts from his qualified plan account. This rule was repealed for years after 1987. It now only apples to grandfathered amounts. Cite IRS Notice 87-13.