How does the process work?
The first step is establishing your new Precious Metals IRA account. Your dedicated Account team member will walk you through the simple application. It's only a few pages long and takes about 10 minutes to complete. We will help you send that back to our offices via fax, email, or mail. Upon receipt, we will process the application and have your new IRA account completely set up within 24 hours! Lear Capital will then immediately reach out to your current IRA custodian to arrange for the tax-free rollover of your retirement monies. Transferring the funds may take up to 5 business days, depending on your current IRA custodian. The funds are transferred usually via bank wire, and once they have been deposited into your Precious Metals IRA account, you are ready to get invested!
In a Precious Metals IRA, do I actually own the physical metals or do I just get certificates?
When you open a Precious Metals IRA with Lear Capital, you will be the proud owner of the actual physical metals you purchased. All of your hard assets are securely stored at a state-of-the-art, IRS-approved, insured private storage facility. Once you are age-eligible to take a mandatory distribution, you can choose to either take physical possession of your metals or liquidate your assets (in the appropriate amount, as determined by the IRS rules).
Where are my metals stored?
Lear Capital ships (insured) all metals directly to the Brink's IRS-approved depository vault located in Salt Lake City, UT. Brink's has safeguarded valuables since 1859 and is entrusted to handle billions of dollars-worth of valuables every day. Brink's backs it storage services with an impressive, comprehensive insurance policy, underwritten by Lloyds of London, one of world's oldest insurance providers. Brink's state-of-the-art facility is the ideal solution for safe, secure, private storage of your precious metals.
Are my metals safe at the depository? What if something happens to them (theft, damage)?
Each and every client account at the Brink's Depository is 100% insured for the full value of the metals stored. In addition, every package shipped from the Brink's depository also carries full insurance coverage. Brink's provides an impressive, comprehensive insurance policy, underwritten by Lloyds of London, one of the world's oldest insurance providers. Brink's insurance policy protects your assets against physical loss or damage arising from any cause, even Acts of God (fire, flood, etc.).
How do I move money from another retirement account into a Precious Metals IRA?
There are two safe, tax-free and penalty-free methods used to transfer money between retirement accounts: the direct trustee-to-trustee transfer and the 60-day rollover option.
- The trustee-to-trustee process moves your retirement monies from your current IRA provider directly into the hands of your new Precious Metals IRA provider.
- If the 60-day rollover method is used, your current IRA account provider mails a check to your home address; you will then simply mail that check directly to your new Precious Metals IRA provider. As long as this check is provided to the new IRA custodian and deposited into your new IRA account within 60-days, there are no taxes or penalties incurred.
We know this rollover process can seem complicated and we urge our clients to let us do the heavy lifting! With your consent, your IRA team member will assess which method would work best for your portfolio and will handle the entire process on your behalf, filling out the paperwork or making any necessary phone calls. Lear's IRA Department has successfully processed over $1 Billion of these types of transactions and you can rest assured your IRA team member will assist you step-by-step through the entire process.
If I transfer money from my IRA into a Precious Metals IRA, are there any taxes or penalties?
No. If you follow the procedures specified in Question No. 4, there are not taxes or penalties. And your dedicated IRA team member will work directly with you to ensure that the proper procedure is followed to ensure that we safely and securely rollover money between retirement accounts in such a way that does not incur any type of taxes or penalties.
Is the paperwork complicated?
Opening or rolling over into Precious Metals IRA is a very easy process, thanks to the assistance provided by your IRA team member. We will assist you with filling out a simple IRA application to open your Precious Metals IRA account. You only need to provide your basic contact information and the contact information for one other beneficiary you'd like to list on your account. We accept forms via mail, fax, or email—whichever is easiest for you. In addition, we also use DocuSign to capture electronic signatures making the application process even easier; this means that you don't have to print anything out. Lear's IRA Department has successfully processed over $1 Billion of IRA transactions and you can rest assured your IRA team member will assist you step-by-step through the entire process.
I have many different investment accounts in my portfolio. Which ones can I rollover into a Precious Metals IRA?
You may only rollover IRAs or other qualified retirement accounts into a Precious Metals IRA. Qualified retirement accounts include: Roth, SEP or a SIMPLE IRA, 401k, 403b, 457b, Pension plans, or Thrift Savings accounts. If you would like to know which account(s) you have that can be rolled over into a Precious Metals IRA account, our IRA team member is happy to help you. You can go over your options with our IRA team member over the phone prior to making any decisions or starting the process.
How long does this process take?
It takes about 1 business day to open your new Precious Metals IRA and to receive your new IRA account number. The time is takes to transfer funds from one retirement account to another varies, depending on your current IRA custodian. On average, funds can be transferred within 5 business days.
What does it cost to set up and maintain a Precious Metals IRA?
There is only one annual payment of $160 for a Precious Metals IRA. This includes the payment for storage, the cost of insurance to protect your metals, quarterly financial statements, and 24/7 access to view your account online. Compare this to the often expensive and complicated fee structure of many traditional IRAs and 401ks. Consider this: AARP recently conducted a survey on 401k participants' awareness of the features of their retirement plans. They found that 65% of participants thought they paid no fees at all, and only 17% stated that they do pay fees; 18% stated that they just don't know. It's no wonder! 401ks usually charge plan administration fees, individual service fees, and investment fees — a fact many people do not understand. Don't think you're necessarily safe with an IRA either! According to Mercer Bullard, a law professor at the University Of Mississippi School Of Law, “IRAs, where 401k assets unfortunately end up, have as high if not even higher fees on average.” One of the beauties of the self-directed Precious Metals IRA is a simple, transparent fee schedule that allows you to be in complete control of your assets against harmful hidden costs.
How can I track my portfolio's performance?
The IRA custodian, Self Directed IRA Services, Inc., offers 24/7 online access to your portfolio's performance as well as quarterly statements that can be mailed directly to your home address. The secure website is easy to navigate and makes it simple to track the performance of your precious metals.
What happens when I want to take a distribution or process my annual Required Minimum Distribution (RMD)?
It's simple! First, you let your Lear IRA team member know whether or not you want the physical metals shipped straight to your front door, or if you'd like to receive cash instead. We can arrange for the metals to be securely shipped from the Brink's depository, or we can help you liquidate your metals in exchange for cash. Once liquidated, the distribution can be wired into your desired bank account or mailed to you via check. The choice is yours. It takes only 1 business day to process your distribution and the funds will be sent out immediately!
Can I make contributions to this account like I normally would with my current Traditional IRA?
Yes! If you are still making annual contributions to your retirement account, we can arrange to have those contributions automatically transferred into your Precious Metals IRA account on a recurring schedule. The contributions can sit in your account in a cash position earning a low rate of interest, or you can invest in more precious metals.
Why can't I hold metals in my current IRA?
Unfortunately, if your IRA account is invested in stocks, mutual funds, ETFs, bonds (or other traditional investment vehicles), then it is highly unlikely that your current IRA provider is able or willing to manage a physical asset such as precious metals. The brokerage firms that most people utilize to manage their IRAs are only equipped to buy and sell shares in the stock market and store information digitally. In order to invest your IRA in physical precious metals, you have to open a special type of IRA called a “Self-Directed IRA” and you should work with a company who contracts with an IRS-approved storage facility with experience managing physical assets. We will help you open one of these versatile Self-Directed IRAs so that you may invest in physical precious metals.
The statements made on this website are opinions and past performance is no indication of future performance or returns. Precious metals, like all investments, carry risk. Precious metals and coins may appreciate, depreciate, or stay the same depending on a variety of factors. Lear Capital, Inc. cannot guarantee, and makes no representation, that any metals purchased will appreciate at all or appreciate sufficiently to make customers a profit. The decision to purchase or sell precious metals, and which precious metals to purchase or sell, are the customer’s decision alone, and purchases and sales should be made subject to the customer’s own research, prudence and judgment.