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I did a backdoor Roth IRA, how do I not get double taxed?

I did a backdoor Roth IRA in April of 2016 for the 2015 Year. I opened the Traditional IRA Contributed $5,500 of after-tax money and then converted it to a Roth Ira. I have since received a 1099-R from Vanguard that says I had a distribution of $5,500 in 2016 and the reason is listed as 2 which I believe shows I converted it to a Roth IRA. I had no other Traditional IRA’s other than the one I converted, I still have no Traditional IRA’s. I want to do the same thing now in 2017 for the 2016 year. When I put this in to TurboTax I see the amount owed go up by quite a bit. It looks like it is trying to tax me for the distribution. How do I put this scenario in TurboTax so that I do not have to pay additional taxes? 

1 Reply
Level 15

I did a backdoor Roth IRA, how do I not get double taxed?

Code 2 only says that the distribution is not subject to an additional 10% early distribution  penalty.

What you did in 2016 is separate form 2017.   You can make a non-deductible Traditional IRA contribution for 2016 and enter it in the IRA contribution section which will add to your 2016 basis, but any Roth conversion done in 2017 will be reported next year on your 2017 tax return.

Enter your 2016 contribution in the IRA contribution section.

Your 2015 non-deductible contribution should have been reported on your 2015 tax return with a 8606 form. 

Here is my "canned" answer for reporting a backdoor Roth.


This so-called “back-door Roth” method ONLY works if you have NO OTHER Traditional IRA accounts.  If you do, then the non-deductible part must be spread over ALL accounts and cannot be withdrawn by itself.  Only if you started with NO Traditional IRA and ended up with a zero amount in ALL Traditional IRA accounts will this Roth conversion not be taxable.

First you must enter your Traditional IRA contributions (if there were 2016 contributions).

IRA contribution
Federal Taxes,
Deductions & Credits,
I’ll choose what I work on (if that screen comes up),,
Retirement & Investments,
Traditional & Roth IRA contribution.

Be SURE to answer the follow up that the are choosing to make this contribution NON-DEDUCTIBLE - if that screen comes up. (DO NOT say that you moved (recharacterized) the money to a Roth) – this is a conversion, not a recharactorazition.

Then enter the 1099-R that shows the distribution.

Federal Taxes,
Wages & Income
I’ll choose what I work on (if that screen comes up),,
Retirement Plans & Social Security,
IRA, 401(k), Pension Plan Withdrawals (1099-R).

Answer the follow-up questions answer the question that you moved the money to another retirement. The screen will open up with choices of where it was moved. Choose you converted it to Roth IRA.

When asked if you have made any non-deductible contributions say " "yes" if you did then enter the non-deductible contributions made for tax years before 2016.     (Usually zero unless you also made a 2015 or earlier non-deductible contribution).

Enter the 2016 year end value of your Traditional IRA a "0" (zero) - if it is in fact zero - this tax free Roth conversion will not work if it is not zero.

[If you had any other Traditional IRA at the end of 2016, then the nondeductible "basis" must be pro-rated over the current distribution and the total IRA value and only a portion of the Roth conversion will be non taxable and part will be taxable, with the remaining non-deductible basis carrying forward for future distributions. You can never only withdrew the nondeductible basis as long as the IRA exists and has a value more than zero.]

The non-deductible amount of your contribution will be subtracted from the taxable amount of the conversion on then 8606 form and enter on line 15a of them 1040 form and a zero taxable amount on line 15b  if you did it right.

Also see this website that has some screenshots of the procedure

**Disclaimer: This post is for discussion purposes only and is NOT tax advice. The author takes no responsibility for the accuracy of any information in this post.**

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