Tax withholding


Q. I am a military member retiring in January 2014. I will have approximately $57,000 invested in my Thrift Savings Plan account when I retire.  If I decide to withdraw my account in one lump sum, how much will I pay in taxes? I’ve heard that I would be taxed up to 30 percent of my balance at time of withdrawal, which would leave me with about $39,900 after taxes. Is this accurate?

A. Your check will be reduced by 20 percent for mandatory federal tax withholding. This is just a deposit against your federal tax liability, however, which you won’t determine until you file your tax return for that year. You may also owe state income tax on the distribution.


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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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