Q: During the Obama campaign, there was talk of allowing up to $10,000 penalty-free 401(k)/Thrift Savings Plan withdrawals for hardship purposes. Have you heard whether this has been passed into law yet?
A: It is my understanding that penalty-free hardship withdrawals are permitted under certain circumstances. You should start with IRS Publication 590 or consult a qualified tax adviser for details. I recommend using someone who would be responsible for preparing your return for the year of the withdrawal.