Should I receive a 1099-R for every 401K rollover

I rolled over several employer 401(K)s into a traditional IRA at Merrill Lynch.  Most of these rollovers were direct where the 401(K) funds were sent from the holding institution directly to Merrill Lynch.  I have not received a 1099-R from some of the sending institutions.  Do I need1099-Rs for all of these transactions?  If so should I contact the sending institution or can I just enter the appropriate 1099-R infomjration on my own?
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    Hey folks, I have found that according to at least one publication used by professional tax preparers, that direct trustee to trustee 'transfers' are not considered 'rollovers' and do not require a 1099-R.

    I was personally expecting a 1099R from Scottrade, and like Wally, they told me that since it was a direct transfer to another trustee (401k to IRA), using ACAT, they do not need to issue the 1099R. He said that if I had closed the account, and they issued a check, then it would be an event requiring a 1099R to be issued.

    Since there would be no actual tax effect to my tax return, I will not worry about it. I believe that I was wrong in my initial response.
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      Everyone --

      To settle confusion, if this is still an issue:
           1. a rollover requires 1099-R reporting
           2. a direct transfer does not require 1099-R reporting
           3. a rollover is not a "direct transfer" even if it is paid directly from trustee #1 to trustee #2.

      A rollover is a deposit of a distribution that you receive -- or are entitled to receive -- from a plan or IRA as a result of meeting whatever the conditions for distribution are (usually, but not always, involving termination of employment). If the distribution is coming from an employer plan (as opposed to an IRA), the default option is to have the distribution paid directly to another plan (or an IRA) without you getting the money. That is a "direct rollover" -- not a "transfer" -- and is reported exactly the same as if you had received a check, deposited it, walked into your broker, and wrote a new check to open an IRA. (In fact, the Form 1099-R has codes to indicate that the transaction is such a "direct rollover", as opposed to a "regular" rollover.)

      A direct transfer -- of the type that requires no reporting and does not appear on your tax return -- is a transfer from one plan to another or one IRA to another -- but not from a plan to an IRA or vice versa -- for reasons other than effecting a distribution to/for a participant. For example, if your company sells a division to another company, the accounts of the affected employees  may be transferred from the seller's plan to the buyer's plan without the involvement of the employees themselves. Those transfers would not be reported on Form 1099.

      Going back to "direct rollovers", the main reason for using them is that an amount that is rolled over directly by the trustee is not subject to income tax withholding. A distribution that is paid to you (if it is eligible to be rolled over) is subject to 20% Federal income tax withholding, even if you wanted to roll it over and thereby avoid tax. So you would only get 80% of the distribution, and then could only roll over 80% (unless you took the remaining 20% from someplace else), in which event the 20% that you didn't roll over remains taxable to you  even though it was physically paid to the IRS.
      • Well done, jashendo!  You got it right by outlining the requirements (and the unfortunate confusion of terms that is common).
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      You should have received 1099Rs for all of these by now, assuming you did the rollovers in 2010.

      I would call your employers 401k plan to ask them to get you copies ASAP.

      You need to have the source documents in order to complete a valid tax return.
      • Hi Sal, I rolled over my 401K to traditional IRA a/c and got 2 of 1099-R, one with "0" distribution amount & 0 tax; while the 2nd 1099-R shown the $5K as distribution amount ($5K is the actual rollover amount) with "0" tax. Do I need to enter both of those 1099-R with 2 different figures or one  with 0 distribution only??? I need your expert opinions. Thank you.

        MH
      • MH, My guess is that you received a 'corrected' 1099R (it should say so on it somewhere). I believe the correct one is going to be the one with 5k in box 1 and 0 in box 2a. You will see that when you are done entering it, your refund or tax due will not change.
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      You should receive a 1099-R (or 1099-R's) representing the total amount rolled over. It may be a single Form, or it may be multiple forms.
      The 1099-R is issued by the plan -- usually the trustee -- not necessarily the organization that actually makes the payment. For example, if you have a single plan with funds invested in 4 different investment vehicles (say, mutual funds), you would normally get one Form 1099-R reflecting the total amount paid (or rolled over). On the other hand, the plan trustee may have contracted with the individual fund families to take care of the reporting obligations for their respective funds.
      So, when you say you have "several employer 401(k)'s", do you mean several plans (as from several different employers), or simply several investments under a single plan? If you literally mean several plans, then you should have a 1099-R from each. If you mean several investments under a single plan, check the dollar amounts on what you received -- you may have received the "full" reporting on one Form.
      • I spoke to a representative at Charles Schwab where I had a 401K that I transferred into an IRA at Merrill Lynch.  Charles Schwab did not send me a 1099-R for the transfer.  The Schwab representative told me that a 1099-R is not required if the funds are transferred directly to the receiving institution using the ACAT system.
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      Wally --
      I'd find another representative, and ask him for authority (more than "that's the way we do it"). I've been doing this for a long time, and I've never heard of an exception to reporting just because they're using ACAT. The form itself says that direct rollovers are reportable in box 1, and I can see no reason why ACAT should make a difference. It's not even an IRS procedure.
      (It doesn't matter any more than what Schwab does, but their "competitors" don't do that.)
      • Bank of America told me the same thing - that I will not get a 1099-R for my rollover since it went direct to Schwab.
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        TTSals's last answer may not be entirely accurate.  A movement (a "rollover") from a 401(k) to a Traditional IRA account, whether or not done by "direct trustee-to-trustee" transfer (and whether or not perfomred through the ACAT system), still must result in the source trustee issuing a 1099-R to the taxpayer and the IRS.
        • I spoke to Merrill Lynch today. I had direct transferred my 401K to an IRA. They said this event does not go on your income taxes at all. I cannot find or did not receive a 1099-R
        • I have converted Traditional IRA to ROTH IRA in Bank of america, they did not send 1099-R. I called up and said, they do not send 1099R. How to handle this?
          I suppose to pay tax on those conversion.
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