The IRS issued a Revenue Ruling (RR 2019-19) affirming that a taxpayer cannot delay inclusion of a retirement plan distribution by not cashing the distribution check.
In summary, a qualified retirement plan distribution is includible in income in the year of the distribution, without regard to whether the check is cashed in that year. The plan administrator must accomplish the requisite tax withholding of the plan distribution and provide the beneficiaries their requisite IRS Form 1099-R.
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