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Where can I get infromatin about 401K withdraws?
Mar 6, 2006

I work for a small company where I have known the HR person for a long time. While I'm sure she knows of my HIV status I don't feel comfortable asking her this question as I don't want her to know of my intentions in leaving my job and possibly mentioning my plans to my boss.

While I'm healthy and still active I want to take a year off to travel (43yo, HIV+ 16 years now, 664 CD 4, undetectable VL woo hoo!).

I have seen many of my friends regret not having done things while they were active and able. I don't want to have any regrets about things in my life that I didn't do when I could. Anyway back to my question, I know that I can keep insurance via COBRA when I leave and I intend to do so. I'm trying to figure out the smartest way to pay for it. I know that I have read somewhere that you can take a hardship withdrawal from your 401K for medical expenses and education expenses and not have to take the 10% penalty. My question is where can I find those requirements that explain how this should properly be done? I don't have a lot of money in my 401K but want to make the most out of what I do have. I have made the mistake many years ago of withdrawing my 401K money when I changed jobs and want to avoid that as much as possible. Are there any web sites that address this issue or if you could provide insight that would be greatly appreciated.

Regards -Frank

Response from Ms. Breuer

Dear Frank, THis is a great question for someone who spends full time in benefits counseling. We don't have anyone at this forum who does that, but you do have two good resources: your local AIDS service organization (or a large one in your state), which does have benefits counselors, or www.helpwithbenefits, managed by a very experienced benefits counselor who has the chops to answer your question.

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