As noted, the first payment is "due" in the calendar year in which you turn age 70. **BUT** you can defer that payment until the following year (it's optional).

That changes nothing for all years after Year #1.

You need to be aware that, if you delay the Year #1 payment (OK, it likely saves/defers some taxes) that you might shoot yourself in the foot in the next year when you have TWO distributions to take. Depending on the tax return involved, you could see everything from more of Soc Sec being taxed to hitting some of the Obamacare taxes to even getting to know Miss IRMAA.

The vast majority of my clients have chosen NOT to delay the Year #1 distribution, especially when the related issues above become relevant.

FE