Can I make a hardship withdrawal from my 401(k)?
If your 401(k) plan allows hardship distributions, you can withdraw money for yourself, your spouse, or your dependent for what the IRS deems "an immediate and heavy financial need."
This could include things like medical or funeral expenses, money you need to come up with to avoid being evicted or foreclosed on, and repair costs to your home. See the IRS definition of a 401(k) hardship.
Generally, your 401(k) plan will specify what info you need to provide your employer to demonstrate a hardship. It's up to your employer and 401(k) custodian to approve your withdrawal request.
When you make a hardship withdrawal, you cannot repay the distribution like you can if you took out a loan against your 401(k). Also, in most cases you're not able to contribute to your 401(k) for a period of 6 months following the withdrawal.