The contribution rules for traditional and Roth individual retirement accounts (IRAs) did not change from 2010 to 2011.

IRA Contribution Limits for 2011

For traditional and Roth IRAs, the contribution limits remain at $5,000 per individual or the amount of your taxable income, whichever is less.

The contribution limits apply to the combination of traditional and Roth IRAs – not $5,000 per account. For example, if you contributed $2,500 to a traditional IRA, you can only contribute $2,500 to a Roth IRA.

If you are 50 years of age or older before the end of 2011, your maximum contribution is $6,000 or the amount of your taxable income, whichever is less.

The following table shows the IRA contribution limits for 2011:

YearAge = under 50Age = 50 and up
2011$5,000$6,000
2010$5,000$6,000

Note that if you haven’t yet contributed the maximum amount to your IRA for tax year 2010, you have until April 15, 2011 to do so. You may also contribute to your IRA for tax year 2011 during this period if you have maxed out your 2010 IRA contribution.

Phase Out Limits for Traditional and Roth IRAs in 2011

IRA contributions are subject to phase out limits when your income reaches a certain level. This means that an individual can contribute less to an IRA as their income rises. Once the income exceeds a certain level, rules prohibit an individual from contributing to an IRA.

For a traditional IRA, the phase limit depends on whether you are covered by a retirement plan at work.

If you are covered by a retirement plan at work:

YearAge = under 50Age = 50 and upFiling StatusPhase out begins when MAGI exceeds:Ineligible if MAGI exceeds:
2011$5,000$6,000Single or head of household$56,000$66,000
2010$5,000$6,000Married filing separately$0$10,000
Married filing jointly or qualifying widow(er)$90,000$110,000

If you are not covered by a retirement plan at work:

YearAge = under 50Age = 50 and upFiling StatusPhase out begins when MAGI exceeds:Ineligible if MAGI exceeds:Filing StatusPhase out begins when MAGI exceeds:Ineligible if MAGI exceeds:
2011$5,000$6,000Single or head of household$56,000$66,000Single, head of household, or qualifying widow(er)No phase out-
2010$5,000$6,000Married filing separately$0$10,000Married filing jointly with a spouse who is covered by a plan at work$169,000$179,000
Married filing jointly or qualifying widow(er)$90,000$110,000Married filing jointly or separately with a spouse who is not covered by a plan at workNo phase out-
Married filing separately with a spouse who is covered by a plan at work$0$10,000

For a Roth IRA, the following table shows its phase out limits:

YearAge = under 50Age = 50 and upFiling StatusPhase out begins when MAGI exceeds:Ineligible if MAGI exceeds:Filing StatusPhase out begins when MAGI exceeds:Ineligible if MAGI exceeds:Filing StatusPhase out begins when MAGI exceeds:Ineligible if MAGI exceeds:
2011$5,000$6,000Single or head of household$56,000$66,000Single, head of household, or qualifying widow(er)No phase out-Single, head of household, or married filing separately and did not live with spouse during the year$107,000$122,000
2010$5,000$6,000Married filing separately$0$10,000Married filing jointly with a spouse who is covered by a plan at work$169,000$179,000Married filing separately and lived with spouse during the year$0$10,000
Married filing jointly or qualifying widow(er)$90,000$110,000Married filing jointly or separately with a spouse who is not covered by a plan at workNo phase out-Married filing jointly or qualifying widow(er)$169,000$179,000
Married filing separately with a spouse who is covered by a plan at work$0$10,000

For information on your 2011 IRA contribution limits, visit the IRS website.

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