You can take money out of your RRSP before you retire for any reason, but you will immediately have to pay a withholding tax, and will have to report the full amount as income in your personal tax return in the year you withdraw it. You’ll also permanently lose the contribution room you originally used to make the contribution.
There are two ways you can withdraw money from your RRSP tax free – up to certain limits and conditions. The government’s Home Buyer’s Plan allows you to borrow up to $25,000 for your first home, as long as you pay it back over the next 15 years. The government’s Lifelong Learning Plan allows you to borrow up to $20,000 for your education or your spouse’s education, as long as you pay it back over the next 10 years. Learn more about withdrawing money from your RRSP before you retire.
If you are making withdrawals in retirement, learn about your options for getting retirement income from your RRSP.