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Managing a Year-of-Death RMD in an Inherited IRA

The rule that you must take the required minimum distribution before doing a “rollover” does not apply to IRA-to-IRA transfers.

Question: I'm worried whether my client's IRA provider has broken a rule. Mother died in 2018 at age 83, leaving her IRA to Junior. The IRA provider is GreatBigBank. At the time of her death, Mother had not yet taken her 2018 required minimum distribution.

All cash and investments in Mother's account were transferred into an "inherited IRA" account at GreatBigBank. The name on this new account is "Junior, as beneficiary of Mother," and the taxpayer ID number is Junior's Social Security number. After that transfer was completed, Junior withdrew Mother's 2018 required minimum distribution from this "inherited IRA" account.