7 Realities of RMDs provides an overview of Required Minimum Distributions. In addition, it’s been updated to reflect the SECURE ACT:
Starting at age 70 ½ or 72 (See below), you are required to withdraw a percentage of money from your retirement accounts. The amount is based on the previous year’s ending value of that account. The minimum amount you are required to withdraw is based on one of two schedules. The schedule used depends on your marital status, primary beneficiary designations, and the age difference between you and your spouse.
Beginning in 2020, the Secure Act raised the age for beginning RMDs to 72 for all retirement accounts subject to RMDs. IRA owners reaching age 70 ½ in 2020 catch a break and will NOT have to take their first RMD in 2020. For those who turned 70 ½ prior to 2020, you are under the old rules.
If you fail to withdraw your correct RMD amount(s) by the deadline, the IRS has the right to impose a fine of 50% of the value you failed to take out. That is in addition to the taxes on that balance.
There are specific RMD rules for survivors taking distributions from a spouse’s or non-spouse IRA. The Secure Act made changes to the rules. Beginning for deaths after December 31, 2019, the non-spouse beneficiary of inherited IRAs are no longer subject to annual RMDs. Instead they must deplete the account by the tenth year following the year of death. There are five specific exempt classes of beneficiaries not subject to the 10-year post-death payout rule. For deaths in 2019 or prior years, the old rules apply requiring annual RMD payouts calculated over the lifespan of the beneficiary.