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What is Form 8915-F Qualified 2021 Disaster Retirement Plan Distributions and Repayments?

SOLVEDby TurboTax7112Updated April 05, 2022

Form 8915-F is used to report a disaster-related retirement distribution (including COVID-related distributions) and any repayments of those funds. For Tax Year 2021, Form 8915-F replaced Form 8915-E.

Here's two important things you need to know about this form:

  • In prior tax years, Form 8915-E allowed you to spread the taxable part of the distribution over three years
  • This distribution schedule is no longer an option with Form 8915-F, but you can still report prior-year distribution amounts on your 2021 return

We'll complete and include Form 8915-F with your return if you qualify. Just enter your Form 1099-R and answer a few questions to determine your eligibility.

Note: You can learn when Form 8915-F will be available in TurboTax here.

To qualify for Form 8915-F—and to be exempt from the early withdrawal penalty—a few rules must be met:

1. The withdrawal must come from an eligible retirement plan. This could be any of the following:

  • A qualified pension, profit-sharing, or stock bonus plan (including a 401(k))
  • A qualified annuity plan
  • A tax-sheltered annuity contract
  • A governmental section 457 deferred compensation plan
  • A traditional, SEP, SIMPLE, or Roth IRA

2. The distribution must be to an eligible individual. This is a person who was affected while living in a federally declared disaster area. This doesn't include any area that was declared a federal disaster area only because of COVID-19.

There's also a $100,000 distribution limit to the exemption. Any distributions over that amount may be subject to additional tax.

The COVID-related distribution exemption was only for distributions made prior to December 31, 2020.

You had two options to pay tax on the distributions you took due to COVID in 2020:

  1. You chose to report the income over three years, starting with the year you received your distribution.
    • So, for example, if you withdrew $15,000 in 2020 because of COVID, you'd report $5,000 in income each year on your return for 2020, 2021, and 2022.
    • You would have selected this option when completing your 2020 tax return. The portion of the prior-year distribution to be taxed in 2021 will appear on Form 8915-F.
  2. You included the entire distribution as your income in 2020 and were taxed on the entire distribution at that time. 

Yes, you can repay all or part of the distribution you took within three years of taking it. If the distribution was due to COVID-19, you won’t owe federal income tax on the distribution.

For example, if you withdrew in 2020, and you report the income over three years (2020, 2021, and 2022), but decide to repay the full amount in 2022, you can amend your 2020 and 2021 federal returns to claim a refund of the tax from the distribution that you included in income for those years, and you'd also avoid having to pay income tax on your 2022 return.

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