A distribution from a qualified retirement plan such as a Profit Sharing plan does not happen automatically when you terminate employment. You will need to contact your previous employer and request the distribution. As the other advisor mentioned, there are other conditions to be aware of, such as, a 10% early withdrawal penalty if you are under the age of 59 ½ and the money you receive is subject to State & Federal income tax. Depending on the vesting schedule in your plan you may not receive the entire amount in your account. If you have joined another company and they have a retirement plan in place you should ask if rollovers are allowed as you may be able to avoid taxes and potential early withdrawal penalties by rolling the distribution into your current plan.
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Christine, You need to request a distribution by contacting the plan administrator. If a distribution is made to you under the plan before you reach age 59½, you may have to pay a 10% additional tax above your income tax rate on the distribution.
However there are exceptions if the distribution, here are some of them: - Is made because the participant has a qualifying disability, - Distribution to a participant after separation from service if the separation occurred during or after the calendar year in which the participant reached age 55, - Distribution for medical care up to the amount allowable as a medical expense deduction
If you have not attained age 55, you should consider rolling the balance over to an IRA.
If you would like to discuss the specifics of your situation with me I can provide a more specific answer. Please contact me at email@example.com or at 908-821-9764.