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We have an annuity that has enough money to pay for in home care for a time but am wondering if we would be taxed at the same rate if it were being used for something mundane?

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I thank all of you who have responded to the annuity issue. I hope you will let all young people you know not to invest in an annuity. It is not the best way to save as I now know.
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JohnnyJ, you are right about using medical expenses to offset the deferred interest on the annuities. My accountant said that most of the cost of AL was allowed as a medical deduction. The problem was that my mom was in independent living for the first four years and none of that counted. She lost my dad's pensions and social security when dad died (she did get the bump up in her SS), but she needed another 3K per month in addition to her SS. Annuities are "last in, first out", so when you make a partial withdrawal, usually up to 10% of the balance, it is all interest for the first several years until the accumulated interest is all withdrawn. You can get around this by annuitizing the withdrawals, making part of each withdrawal interest and part principal, but usually not until the maturity date, and once you do that you are stuck with the payment schedule. If you need additional funds you can't get them, even by paying an early withdrawal fee. So, not knowing what level of care my mom might need in the future, I did not want to back myself into that corner! I have learned way more about annuities than I ever wanted to know!
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I had a similar experience with my Dads annuities that AK had. Some salesman got hold of Dad as his dementia was starting and sold him 8 complex annuities. I eventually had to take over the finances for my folks and tracing down and figuring out these annuities was a nightmare.
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AKdaughter - great insight on annuities and their fine print.
5! That's a lot of work to keep up with. I cannot imagine what the commission payout was for the insurance agent who wrote the 5 over the 10 years.
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When I went to my friends' tax preparer with the annual income tax forms, I found that all the memory care expenses for them were tax deductible and those expenses exceeded their income. All the money that had been withheld from their retirement income, etc, came back, including the taxes on the RMD from their IRAs. I suspect the annuity money would have the same thing happen to it. The question about the early withdrawal penalties the annuity may have is an issue we haven't dealt with yet. They don't have an annuity anyway, but my wife and I do and its a good question to ask.
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akdaughter- Oh my gosh! Thank you for mentioning the annuity's nursing home clause and their interpretation. One of my father's annuities has such a clause; however, I never checked to see their requirements regarding nursing home defination and qualifications. Dad is still at home, but this information will help in the future. Thank you!
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Annuities can vary greatly. Unless you are able and willing to understand a contract which may be 50 pages long, make sure that you use a trusted professional to explain it to you. When my dad died almost 10 years ago, most of my mom's assets were tied up in annuities. There were five different contracts from four different companies. Then one company was sold to another company. Just getting contact information was a challenge. I spent many hours reading and taking notes so that I would be able minimize the early withdrawal penalties and tax on the deferred interest while providing enough money for my mother's needs. I am now down to just one, and I can get the rest of the $ from it next year, so it will have taken nearly 10 years.

I would add one caution - one of mom's annuities had a clause providing for early withdrawal without penalty if she needed nursing home care. Sounds good, right? Well, mom has spent the past five years in assisted living and now memory care, neither of which qualify for the early withdrawal. For this company, "nursing home" means RNs on duty 24/7, something AL and memory care do not have.
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Also if you should ever need to apply for NH Medicaid annuities can pose problems......it's an asset which can be counted & will either need to be spent down in its entirety so you face a huge hit on the settlement, or the $ paid counts into your monthly income which must go towards your copay or SOC (share of cost) & it will need to become Medicaid compliant to stay in force. If your married & your spouse or you face needing NH Medicaid, the community spouse would need to be able to somehow convert the existing annuity into a Medicaid compliant SPIA, so try to find out if a spia conversion can be done.

One issue with planning is that folks assume that they will never ever need to apply for medicaid. They have plenty of $ and feel financially secure. they aren't poor like people on Medicaid are. Have great health insurance, not like those people on medicaid. They are healthy, not like those people on medicaid.
But just one accident or incident and you could go through thousands or hundred of thousands of $$ for the costs of care required copay. The #1 reason for bankruptcy is medical costs. You just never know. If $ is tied into an annuity and you don't have the income or liquid savings for copays or outsized drugs costs or inhome care for prolonged period, your going to have to tap into that annuity and beyond the allowed annual 8 - 10% distribution without penalty.
Facilities run from 5 - 18k a month and LTC is not covered by Medicare. Rehab is covered by Medicare and 3rd party insurers but rehab has very specific terms for timeframe & %. Please try to pause to see if you have enough reserves outside of the $ in the annuity if needed.
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Thanks for writing. I will check with a professional.
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Wickline, annuities typically have penalties for early payout. I'd check that first, as you could end up paying a penalty just to have access now to the funds. I'm not knowledgeable on tax rates for annuities but the tax rate would I believe be reflected by your income level rather than the purpose of use.

What should probably be done is to thoroughly study the annuity and its penalty for early withdrawal clauses, calculate your income, what any penalty might be and what the tax rate would be for this extra income. Then calculate the anticipated cost of in-home care as a medical deductible (assuming it's for medical care) to offset the increased taxes. That'll help you figure out whether you could withdraw funds now, and how much, w/o tipping the scales to paying higher taxes.

If you're not comfortable with this ( and I wouldn't blame you if you're not! ), get help from a tax professional.
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