I know that if I remove principal from a Roth IRA for longer than 60 days from previous year's contributions, that I cannot put that back into the Roth IRA.

However, assume I deposit 5500 in January 2015. Can I withdraw 5500 in February 2015, and then redeposit 5500 before the 2015 deposit deadline (lets say December 2015 - past the normal 60 day penalty free window)?

  • 1
    You must also withdraw any interim earnings attributable to the contribution you are withdrawing. If that $5500 was deposited into a mutual fund, say, and grew to $5700 in one month because the stock market went up and so the mutual fund shares appreciated in value (no capital gains or dividends were paid in the interim), you must withdraw all those shares, not just enough to get $5500 back from the fund. Jan 27, 2015 at 19:46
  • Am i required to withdraw all of it? What if I deposit 5500 in January 2015, withdraw 1000 in February 2015, and then deposit 1000 in December 2015? Jan 27, 2015 at 22:01
  • @user3416175: I believe that if you withdraw $1000, then that $1000 will count as less than $1000 of contributions assuming the money grew (it will be divided into contributions and earnings in the proportion as the whole Roth IRA), and therefore, you will be able to further contribute less than $1000.
    – user102008
    Jan 28, 2015 at 1:54

2 Answers 2


Generally, it doesn't matter which year the original contribution is. If you withdraw - you have 60 days to roll over to (the same or) different account, and you can only do it once a year. If 60 days passed - it is considered distribution.

What you can do instead is to reverse your contribution. That requires withdrawing not only the full contributed amount, but also all the earnings on it - and paying taxes on the earnings. In this case it is treated as if you haven't made a contribution at all. Talk to your IRA custodian about the technical details of how to do it.


For a Roth IRA for which you contributed funds directly in to the account (not a conversion from a t.Ira) you may withdraw your contribution at any time, no penalty. Attempting to withdraw any earnings from the contributions will see penalties if you are 59 and under.

So in your case, you contributed $5500 in to the account. Say the value goes up to 5700 from investments. You may, at any time, withdraw up to $5500 from the account in the future.

Say in 2017 you contributed $5500, and for 2018 you contributed $5500, then withdraw $5500. You can re-contribute up to a year's worth of contributions 5500 and it's still good. If you had withdrawn $6000, you may only re-contribute up to $5500, and the 500 is removed from your contribution total for the account.

Rothira.com Returning Withdrawn Contributions

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