Q&A With Gordon Pape: Managing A LIRA

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Do you need a broker or can you do it yourself?

Q – I was wondering if you could share some information about locked-in retirement accounts (LIRAs). I am required to transfer pension money to one and I’m having difficulty finding information about them, and would like to have some knowledge before contacting an advisor. Specifically I’m wondering if I can manage it on my own or am I required to go through an advisor? Do RRSP rules apply to LIRAs? – Jen C.

A – You can set up a self-directed LIRA and manage it on your own but it has to be with a brokerage firm if you want to buy stocks, ETFs, etc. If you only want mutual funds, you could work with a bank. As for RRSP rules, yes they apply to LIRAs but LIRA rules are more restrictive in terms of the amounts you can withdraw. That varies from province to province. – G.P.


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