Retirement Milestones

Being old enough to withdraw money from your retirement plan without a penalty may not be cause for a major celebration, but it’s still an important date to know. And speaking of important dates, here’s a rundown of other financial milestones ahead.


AGE 50

You can start putting extra cash away for retirement by making "catch-up" contributions to your IRA and 401(k). For 2011, you may contribute an extra $1,000 to your IRA and an additional $5,500 to your 401(k).

AGE 55

Retire or separate from service the year you turn 55 or after and you can take 401(k) distributions without penalty1.

AGE 59-1/2

This is when you can withdraw your retirement money without a 10% IRS early withdrawal penalty1

AGE 62

You can take your Social Security retirement benefits starting at this age. You’ll receive more money if you wait until later. 

AGE 65

You qualify to take Medicare—whether you continue to work or not. If you’re not receiving Social Security benefits at this age, you must apply for Medicare. Do it three months before you turn 65.

AGE 66 - 67

If you were born between 1943 and 1954, your full retirement age—or the age you can collect 100% of your Social Security benefits—is age 66. You have to wait an additional two months if you were born in 1955. The government adds two more months to the waiting period for each year until 1960. For example, if you were born in 1957, your full retirement age is 66 and 6 months. If you were born in 1960 or later, your full retirement age is 67.


AGE 70-1/2

You must start withdrawing money from your IRAs and retirement plans—except Roth IRAs.

Withdrawals may be subject to Federal income tax and a 10% IRS early withdrawal penalty may also apply to amounts withdrawn prior to age 59 1/2. Consult your attorney or tax advisor for more information.