Ask The Experts: Money Matters

By Mike Miles

TSP life annuity vs. monthly payments

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Q. Is the term TSP Life Annuity synonymous with a Met Life Annuity?

If I choose IV. Withdrawal Elections Monthly Payments is that subject to required minimum distribution? What happens to any money in the account when I die? They don’t ask for beneficiary information.

A. As far as I’m concerned, TSP Life Annuity and MetLife Annuity are the same thing. You may elect fixed monthly payment or have the TSP compute your payments. In either case, you’ll be subject to the required minimum distribution rules, which require that a certain amount be withdrawn from your account each year, once you reach the RMD date. If the TSP computes your payments, they will be exactly enough to meet the lowest computed RMD for your account, you must make sure that they are large enough to, at least, meet your RMD. Any money left over will be paid to your named beneficiary (use form TSP-3 for this), or according to the TSP’s standard order of precedence.

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