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What to do about IRA contributions claimed but no IRA ever opened.

San Francisco, CA |

For 15 years I've claimed simple IRA contributions but I didn't make them to an official IRA account, through my own stupidity I guess. I thought I could just put money in investments/savings but now realize it has to be an official account.
Am I completely screwed? Is there anything I can do, like officially creating an IRA now, then taking distributions from it when I'm required to at 70 1/2 years old, or is that pointless now and I should expect to be fined/prosecuted about this?
I'd planned on taking distributions and paying taxes on that but it seems like it has to be covered by a 1099 or some other reporting form?
Thanks for your help: didn't mean to break the law, and should I get an attorney to sort this out? Or just hope they don't ever notice at IRS?

Attorney Answers 2


  1. Did you put the money in an investment account? If so, contact a CPA and discuss your options. Even if you didn't, I would still contact a CPA. This is really an accounting question not a legal question.


  2. Consult with a CPA or a Certified Financial Planner.

    Mr.Scalise offers a FREE 30 minute phone consultation; he may be reached at 805-244-6850 or by email (craig@scaliselawfirm.com). My responses to questions posted here intended as helpful legal information not legal advice. The information I post does not create an attorney-client relationship. Mr. Scalise is licensed to practice law in California. If you would like to obtain specific legal advice about this issue, you must contact an attorney who is licensed to practice law in your state, and retain him/her. Mr. Scalise provides “unbundled” services for specific assistance with a specific issue.O work with clients throughout California.

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