RRIF payout schedule

Question: – I am interested in finding the schedule of payouts for RRIFs, particularly what happens after age 90. — C.M.

Gordon answers: Up to and including age 70, the minimum annual withdrawal required by the government is determined by taking the market value of the RRIF on Jan. 1 and dividing that amount by 90 less your age on that day. So if the RRIF were valued at $100,000 and you were 65, you would divide $100,000 by 25 to arrive at a minimum withdrawal for that year of $4,000.

From age 71 on, you have to use a formula that has been set by Ottawa. Under this, the percentage of the plan’s value that has to be withdrawn each year increases annually. It starts at 7.38 per cent at age 71, reaches 8.75 per cent by age 80, and rises to 13.62 per cent at age 90. From age 94 on, the minimum withdrawal is 20 per cent of the RRIF’s value on Jan. 1.

Because of this, I advise older people to consider converting at least part of their RRIF to a life annuity in their early 80s. That way, if you live to be 110 you know there will always be income available.

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