Age-based in-service withdrawal


Q. I work as a CSRS federal employee, 60 years old with 35 years of federal service. There is $200,000 in pretax money saved in my Thrift Savings Plan account. I’m interested in taking advantage of the “one-time” age-based in-service withdrawal option. Can I choose any amount to withdraw? For example, my plan is to take out $100,000 and roll (100 percent) directly into my private Individual Retirement Account and invest in stocks. Is it also correct to assume that I can move money from my IRA pretax account into my TSP account (any time and any amount) as long as I maintain a TSP account? I don’t plan to retire for another six years and want to maximize my TSP and IRA growth.

A. You may only withdraw funds in which you are vested. Otherwise, there is no limit on the amount of an age-based in-service withdrawal. You may transfer pretax IRA funds into your TSP account whenever you like for as long as you maintain an account. Before you proceed, you should know that your plan is more likely to fail than succeed in improving your returns.


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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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