Roth IRA for young kids

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drshahvet
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Roth IRA for young kids

Post by drshahvet »

I pay my 7 years and 10 year old $10 each week to do laundry, clean garbage etc at home. They save this money in cash. Can I open Roth IRA for them and invest this money in their name so it starts growing?
nolesrule
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by nolesrule »

Being paid for household chores in their own home is not employment income.
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Nate79
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by Nate79 »

No, tell them if they want to open an IRA they need to get a real job. :D
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retiredjg
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by retiredjg »

I agree. I don't imagine the IRS buying the idea that an allowance paid for household chores is "earned income". A person (or spouse) has to have compensation or earned income in order to contribute to an IRA.
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dratkinson
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by dratkinson »

Additional information:
--Wiki topic: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Accounts_for_children
--Forum search: https://www.google.com/search?q=ira+for ... rg%2Fforum

To do what you want, your kids need to work (babysit, lawn work, child model/actor,...), for others, keep good records of work performed (notebook, 1099 misc), then do tax reporting which will include the IRA contribution.

The tax reporting recognizes the establishment of the IRA, and it's justified by the earned/taxed income from working for others. (I may be using terms incorrectly, but the correct ones don't immediately come to mind.)


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Topic Author
drshahvet
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by drshahvet »

Thanks everyone.
If my children did lawn moving for a neighbor and he/ she paid the compensation in cash. How can one report that compensation to irs? Yes books can be maintained, but Isn't it just a word of mouth at that point without traceable trail of money?
nolesrule
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by nolesrule »

drshahvet wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 1:37 pm Thanks everyone.
If my children did lawn moving for a neighbor and he/ she paid the compensation in cash. How can one report that compensation to irs? Yes books can be maintained, but Isn't it just a word of mouth at that point without traceable trail of money?
Yes, but lots of businesses are cash-only and still legitimate.
sureshoe
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by sureshoe »

drshahvet wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 1:37 pm Thanks everyone.
If my children did lawn moving for a neighbor and he/ she paid the compensation in cash. How can one report that compensation to irs? Yes books can be maintained, but Isn't it just a word of mouth at that point without traceable trail of money?
If your child earns $2000, for example, mowing grass, they file a 1040. That records the income, and if any tax exists, they pay it. At that point, it's "legitimate". Where you might face trouble is if the IRS looks at this and decides it's not a legitimate claim, which is where the records come in if you're audited. A simple notebook or spreadsheet of lawns mowed and prices paid solves the accounting problem. If it's legit, you're good. However, if it's fraudulent, upon submitting falsified records - you'd be committing perjury.

While most people try to reduce the income they pay, there are people who illegitimately attempt to funnel money to children and family members.

The bottom line is that if your child is legitimately earning income independent of family members, they can file taxes and put all that money into a Roth. Otherwise, it's just funny money, and I'd avoid it.
billfromct
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by billfromct »

It’s my understanding that if you make more than $400/year of self employment income, you have to pay Federal self employment tax (employer & employee SS & Medicare contribution) which I believe is a total of 15.3%.

I’m no expert so you might want to contact your tax advisor.

When my daughter worked at some 1099 “contractor” jobs for over several years, she paid the Federal self employment tax quarterly.

With 1099 income, she was able to open a Roth Solo 401k & fund that up to her total self employment income (minus 1/2 of her self employment tax), which was below the Solo 401k maximum, as well as fund her Roth IRA.

bill
Last edited by billfromct on Tue Jan 11, 2022 3:28 pm, edited 2 times in total.
MrJedi
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by MrJedi »

drshahvet wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 1:37 pm Thanks everyone.
If my children did lawn moving for a neighbor and he/ she paid the compensation in cash. How can one report that compensation to irs? Yes books can be maintained, but Isn't it just a word of mouth at that point without traceable trail of money?
$400 or more then a tax return needs to be filed for the self employment taxes that need to be paid.
livesoft
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by livesoft »

No, but you can do a so-called Parental Roth IRA which is just as good.
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TropikThunder
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by TropikThunder »

drshahvet wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 1:37 pm Thanks everyone.
If my children did lawn moving for a neighbor and he/ she paid the compensation in cash. How can one report that compensation to irs? Yes books can be maintained, but Isn't it just a word of mouth at that point without traceable trail of money?
I think the relevant part of the record-keeping is that’s it’s concurrent. Writing down money received when you received it: good. Writing down a list of times you received money two years later when the IRS asks for proof: bad.
inbox788
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by inbox788 »

dratkinson wrote: Mon Jan 10, 2022 7:55 pm Additional information:
--Wiki topic: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Accounts_for_children
--Forum search: https://www.google.com/search?q=ira+for ... rg%2Fforum

To do what you want, your kids need to work (babysit, lawn work, child model/actor,...), for others, keep good records of work performed (notebook, 1099 misc), then do tax reporting which will include the IRA contribution.
Topic No. 756 Employment Taxes for Household Employees
https://www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc756
drshahvet wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 1:37 pmIf my children did lawn moving for a neighbor and he/ she paid the compensation in cash. How can one report that compensation to irs? Yes books can be maintained, but Isn't it just a word of mouth at that point without traceable trail of money?
https://app.qbo.intuit.com/app/homepage
https://www.irs.gov/filing/free-file-fi ... -1040-form
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dratkinson
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by dratkinson »

sureshoe wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 2:28 pm
drshahvet wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 1:37 pm Thanks everyone.
If my children did lawn moving for a neighbor and he/ she paid the compensation in cash. How can one report that compensation to irs? Yes books can be maintained, but Isn't it just a word of mouth at that point without traceable trail of money?
If your child earns $2000, for example, mowing grass, they file a 1040. That records the income, and if any tax exists, they pay it. At that point, it's "legitimate". Where you might face trouble is if the IRS looks at this and decides it's not a legitimate claim, which is where the records come in if you're audited. A simple notebook or spreadsheet of lawns mowed and prices paid solves the accounting problem. If it's legit, you're good. However, if it's fraudulent, upon submitting falsified records - you'd be committing perjury.

While most people try to reduce the income they pay, there are people who illegitimately attempt to funnel money to children and family members.

The bottom line is that if your child is legitimately earning income independent of family members, they can file taxes and put all that money into a Roth. Otherwise, it's just funny money, and I'd avoid it.
Worst case. If audited, the IRS calls up a few neighbors/clients for whom junior claims to have worked and the conversation goes one of two ways.

IRS: Do you know junior drshahvet?
Neighbor/client: Who's that? (Bad answer.)
Neighbor/client: Yes, he does my yard work. (Good answer.)

Idea. Junior should add the client's contact information to his recordkeeping (to expedite any audit).

With all bases covered (complete client information, good recordkeeping of payments received/expense paid*), there should be no problems... even if audited.

* Junior gets to deduct his legitimate business expenses: work clothes, tools (pruning shears, lawnmower,...), consumables (gasoline, air filters,...),.... A new BMW X5 to transport his lawnmower is not a legitimate business expense. But if his business does well and he has income to substantiate it and distant clients, then a used Ford Ranger pickup could be justified.

After junior has established an ongoing business relationship with non-family members as clients... then I believe it would also be acceptable to have family members as clients. If he charges the "current market rate for the job" for all clients, then I don't foresee any problems.


Of course, if an IRS audit uncovered that multiple families had conspired to send their kids to work for each other, as a way to turn "allowances" into "earned income", to get the IRA benefit, then that would be a problem. Don't do that.

Example.
--Junior drshahvet does lawn work for neighbor A.
--Neighbor A's son does lawn work for drshahvet.
This looks like an attempt to turn what would have been an "allowance" into "earned income". Why? Because junior drshahvet does lawn work, so should be doing drshahvet's lawn work as part of his household chores to earn an allowance.
Last edited by dratkinson on Wed Jan 12, 2022 8:19 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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02nz
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by 02nz »

livesoft wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 3:30 pm No, but you can do a so-called Parental Roth IRA which is just as good.
Do you mean a "custodial Roth IRA"? I don't believe there is such a thing as a "parental IRA," Roth or otherwise.
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by livesoft »

02nz wrote: Wed Jan 12, 2022 8:11 pm
livesoft wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 3:30 pm No, but you can do a so-called Parental Roth IRA which is just as good.
Do you mean a "custodial Roth IRA"? I don't believe there is such a thing as a "parental IRA," Roth or otherwise.
No. Maybe I should have called it a "Madoff Roth IRA" instead. Basically, the parent takes the money and invests it (or not) and shows the child number of shares, prices, etc. It actually does not even matter if the money is invested. The parent can even create a no-loss investment and cook the books. Then whenever the child has a real job with earned income, the parents can use their own money and any "in-name only" account to put money in it.

Let's be clear, a Roth IRA from chores of $10 to $50 a week is not going to create the big bucks unless some kind of Madoff-scheme is involved which the parents can easily do.

In any event, I did not mean anything actually close to a real, legitimate Roth IRA which I think is totally unnecessary because the same outcome can be achieved without using a real Roth IRA.
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inbox788
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by inbox788 »

livesoft wrote: Wed Jan 12, 2022 8:50 pmNo. Maybe I should have called it a "Madoff Roth IRA" instead. Basically, the parent takes the money and invests it (or not) and shows the child number of shares, prices, etc. It actually does not even matter if the money is invested. The parent can even create a no-loss investment and cook the books. Then whenever the child has a real job with earned income, the parents can use their own money and any "in-name only" account to put money in it.

Let's be clear, a Roth IRA from chores of $10 to $50 a week is not going to create the big bucks unless some kind of Madoff-scheme is involved which the parents can easily do.

In any event, I did not mean anything actually close to a real, legitimate Roth IRA which I think is totally unnecessary because the same outcome can be achieved without using a real Roth IRA.
It's called BOM or BOD (Bank of MoM or Dad). Some have ATM privileges.

If the kid qualifies, the potentiality for taxfree growth is worth doing a Custodial/Minor Roth.

Fidelity Roth IRA for Kids
https://www.fidelity.com/retirement-ira/roth-ira-kids

https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Emergen ... gency_fund
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by sureshoe »

livesoft wrote: Wed Jan 12, 2022 8:50 pm
02nz wrote: Wed Jan 12, 2022 8:11 pm
livesoft wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 3:30 pm No, but you can do a so-called Parental Roth IRA which is just as good.
Do you mean a "custodial Roth IRA"? I don't believe there is such a thing as a "parental IRA," Roth or otherwise.
No. Maybe I should have called it a "Madoff Roth IRA" instead. Basically, the parent takes the money and invests it (or not) and shows the child number of shares, prices, etc. It actually does not even matter if the money is invested. The parent can even create a no-loss investment and cook the books. Then whenever the child has a real job with earned income, the parents can use their own money and any "in-name only" account to put money in it.

Let's be clear, a Roth IRA from chores of $10 to $50 a week is not going to create the big bucks unless some kind of Madoff-scheme is involved which the parents can easily do.

In any event, I did not mean anything actually close to a real, legitimate Roth IRA which I think is totally unnecessary because the same outcome can be achieved without using a real Roth IRA.
Putting $50/week into a kids' from age 8 to 18 and stopping would be leaving them with an IRA that should be worth about $1M at age 59.5 with a modest 8% return. If you can figure out how to max it to $6000/year, that number is closer to $2.5M, all of which is tax free.

Whatever someone's opinion is on the law, child rearing, etc - getting money into tax shelters very early has a significant benefit.
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by livesoft »

sureshoe wrote: Thu Jan 13, 2022 8:34 am Putting $50/week into a kids' from age 8 to 18 and stopping would be leaving them with an IRA that should be worth about $1M at age 59.5 with a modest 8% return. If you can figure out how to max it to $6000/year, that number is closer to $2.5M, all of which is tax free.

Whatever someone's opinion is on the law, child rearing, etc - getting money into tax shelters very early has a significant benefit.
While I appreciate the thought show me an 8-year-old earning $2500 a year doing chores. I can see them working as an actor or a model, but chores? Inflation must really be bad around here.

In any event the parents can "top up" the account once the soon-to-be 16-year-old is slaving away for The Man with a Roth-eligible earnings and easily reach that $2.5M tax-free at age 59.5 and beyond.
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by vtsnowdin »

Well the child can earn 12,550 a year without owing any income tax and if he is working for the neighbors they should be making out and withholding SS and medicare tax. Or alternately the parents could give JR. up to $15,000 a year under gift tax exemption and put that into a ROTH
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JoMoney
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by JoMoney »

If they have earned income, they can start tracking their Social Security contributions/taxes too. :wink:
If it's self-employment, doubly so :annoyed

EDIT: Maybe not, TIL:
If the business is a parent’s sole proprietorship or a partnership in which each partner is a parent of the child:
...
Payments for the services of a child under age 18 are not subject to social security and Medicare taxes. If the child is 18 years or older, then payments for the services of a child are subject to social security and Medicare taxes.
...
https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-bu ... amily-help
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by j0e0r7 »

sureshoe wrote: Thu Jan 13, 2022 8:34 am
Putting $50/week into a kids' from age 8 to 18 and stopping would be leaving them with an IRA that should be worth about $1M at age 59.5 with a modest 8% return. If you can figure out how to max it to $6000/year, that number is closer to $2.5M, all of which is tax free.

Whatever someone's opinion is on the law, child rearing, etc - getting money into tax shelters very early has a significant benefit.
Is it really that much better than eventually bequeathing them that stock with a stepped-up basis? Your numbers seem to indicate 100% equities the entire time anyway.
Last edited by j0e0r7 on Thu Jan 13, 2022 9:06 am, edited 1 time in total.
vtsnowdin
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by vtsnowdin »

livesoft wrote: Thu Jan 13, 2022 8:40 am
While I appreciate the thought show me an 8-year-old earning $2500 a year doing chores. I can see them working as an actor or a model, but chores? Inflation must really be bad around here.

No but that child in a couple of years can move up to (first) jobs and work 18 hours a week when he is not in school and at 16 all the hours he can get or want. Starting pay at fast food operations is now $16.00/Hr. So a 20Hr/week job could bring him in $15K after taxes are withheld.
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by sureshoe »

livesoft wrote: Thu Jan 13, 2022 8:40 am
sureshoe wrote: Thu Jan 13, 2022 8:34 am Putting $50/week into a kids' from age 8 to 18 and stopping would be leaving them with an IRA that should be worth about $1M at age 59.5 with a modest 8% return. If you can figure out how to max it to $6000/year, that number is closer to $2.5M, all of which is tax free.

Whatever someone's opinion is on the law, child rearing, etc - getting money into tax shelters very early has a significant benefit.
While I appreciate the thought show me an 8-year-old earning $2500 a year doing chores. I can see them working as an actor or a model, but chores? Inflation must really be bad around here.

In any event the parents can "top up" the account once the soon-to-be 16-year-old is slaving away for The Man with a Roth-eligible earnings and easily reach that $2.5M tax-free at age 59.5 and beyond.
I think you're missing the point. This isn't about a child legitimately earning chore money. People are always trying to find ways to get money to their heirs with as small of an impact as possible. George Steinbrenner died in the right year just to avoid paying taxes. ;)
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by 02nz »

vtsnowdin wrote: Thu Jan 13, 2022 8:51 am Or alternately the parents could give JR. up to $15,000 a year under gift tax exemption and put that into a ROTH
No, you need earned income to contribute to a Roth (and it would be limited to $6K/year). Gifts are not earned income.
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by rkhusky »

billfromct wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 3:20 pm It’s my understanding that if you make more than $400/year of self employment income, you have to pay Federal self employment tax (employer & employee SS & Medicare contribution) which I believe is a total of 15.3%.
There are special rules for household employees (housecleaning, yardwork, babysitting, etc). They are not considered self-employed. See IRS Publication 926.
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by rkhusky »

dratkinson wrote: Wed Jan 12, 2022 8:08 pm * Junior gets to deduct his legitimate business expenses: work clothes, tools (pruning shears, lawnmower,...), consumables (gasoline, air filters,...),.... A new BMW X5 to transport his lawnmower is not a legitimate business expense. But if his business does well and he has income to substantiate it and distant clients, then a used Ford Ranger pickup could be justified.

After junior has established an ongoing business relationship with non-family members as clients... then I believe it would also be acceptable to have family members as clients. If he charges the "current market rate for the job" for all clients, then I don't foresee any problems.
If Junior has a business, he is subject to self-employment taxes.
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by vtsnowdin »

02nz wrote: Thu Jan 13, 2022 9:06 am
vtsnowdin wrote: Thu Jan 13, 2022 8:51 am Or alternately the parents could give JR. up to $15,000 a year under gift tax exemption and put that into a ROTH
No, you need earned income to contribute to a Roth (and it would be limited to $6K/year). Gifts are not earned income.
I stand corrected!! :!:
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by pshonore »

rkhusky wrote: Thu Jan 13, 2022 9:13 am
billfromct wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 3:20 pm It’s my understanding that if you make more than $400/year of self employment income, you have to pay Federal self employment tax (employer & employee SS & Medicare contribution) which I believe is a total of 15.3%.
There are special rules for household employees (housecleaning, yardwork, babysitting, etc). They are not considered self-employed. See IRS Publication 926.
That's correct and I believe if someone works for "multiple" neighbors, they not considered household employees. How many of your neighbors would want to get into all that additional tax reporting?
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by an_asker »

02nz wrote: Wed Jan 12, 2022 8:11 pm
livesoft wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 3:30 pm No, but you can do a so-called Parental Roth IRA which is just as good.
Do you mean a "custodial Roth IRA"? I don't believe there is such a thing as a "parental IRA," Roth or otherwise.
LOL. There is no Bank of Mom and/or Dad. Or Santa Claus either :oops:
chrisam314
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by chrisam314 »

Why not just keep it simple and open a separate brokerage account? Buy some VTI/similar for them and let it ride. The taxes on the dividends will be immaterial.
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by rkhusky »

pshonore wrote: Thu Jan 13, 2022 9:49 am
rkhusky wrote: Thu Jan 13, 2022 9:13 am
billfromct wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 3:20 pm It’s my understanding that if you make more than $400/year of self employment income, you have to pay Federal self employment tax (employer & employee SS & Medicare contribution) which I believe is a total of 15.3%.
There are special rules for household employees (housecleaning, yardwork, babysitting, etc). They are not considered self-employed. See IRS Publication 926.
That's correct and I believe if someone works for "multiple" neighbors, they not considered household employees. How many of your neighbors would want to get into all that additional tax reporting?
You can have multiple employers. They are considered household employees unless they have their own business and are self-employed. The IRS has a number of criteria to determine whether someone is classified as an employee or self-employed.
See: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-bu ... r-employee
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Re: Roth IRA for young kids

Post by arcticpineapplecorp. »

livesoft wrote: Wed Jan 12, 2022 8:50 pm
02nz wrote: Wed Jan 12, 2022 8:11 pm
livesoft wrote: Tue Jan 11, 2022 3:30 pm No, but you can do a so-called Parental Roth IRA which is just as good.
Do you mean a "custodial Roth IRA"? I don't believe there is such a thing as a "parental IRA," Roth or otherwise.
No. Maybe I should have called it a "Madoff Roth IRA" instead. Basically, the parent takes the money and invests it (or not) and shows the child number of shares, prices, etc. It actually does not even matter if the money is invested. The parent can even create a no-loss investment and cook the books. Then whenever the child has a real job with earned income, the parents can use their own money and any "in-name only" account to put money in it.

Let's be clear, a Roth IRA from chores of $10 to $50 a week is not going to create the big bucks unless some kind of Madoff-scheme is involved which the parents can easily do.

In any event, I did not mean anything actually close to a real, legitimate Roth IRA which I think is totally unnecessary because the same outcome can be achieved without using a real Roth IRA.
If it's a Madoff Roth IRA, dad will need to make sure to bring the younger siblings into the fold, otherwise where would the money come to provide the "returns" to the older sibling?
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