Penalties and taxes on TSP withdrawal


Q. I am almost 58 years old and retired from military/federal service after my 55th birthday. I would like to withdraw my Thrift Savings Plan now, in a lump sum. How much will I have to pay in penalties and taxes?

A. You’ll be subject to 20 percent backup federal withholding, no early withdrawal penalty, and your tax liability will be determined when you file your tax return for the year of the withdrawal. The money you withdraw will be taxed as ordinary income, and the rate will depend upon your particulars.


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Mike Miles is a Certified Financial Planner licensee and principal adviser for Variplan LLC, an independent fiduciary in Vienna, Virginia. Email your financial questions to and view his blog at

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