Organizing for Tax (and Estate Planning) Season

It’s the start of a new year, which means tax season — and this year’s April 15th IRS filing deadline — is just around the corner.  Soon you’ll be receiving tax forms such as your W-2 or 1099s, and you’ll start thinking about the life events that could affect your taxes in various ways. This flurry of tax prep activity is the perfect opportunity to get your estate plan in order, too, and kill two birds with the proverbial stone. Why?  Because as you run down your list of “tax prep” questions, you will find that your answers could also [...]

By |2021-09-21T21:46:56+00:00February 11th, 2021|Categories: Estate Planning, Home/Property Ownership, Retirement|Tags: |0 Comments

Financial Firms Roll Out Form Aimed at Stopping Financial Elder Abuse

With cases of financial exploitation of the elderly on the rise, advisors who work with older clients are looking for ways to head off the abuse before it happens.  Enter the “Emergency Contact Authorization Form,” a document in which clients can list a trusted person who should be contacted if an advisor suspects a client is starting to lose their mental capacity or, worse yet, being financially abused or scammed. How Does an Emergency Contact Authorization Form Work? The Emergency Contact Authorization Form is a document which allows you to identify someone your financial advisor can contact if your advisor [...]

By |2021-02-05T20:35:58+00:00February 4th, 2021|Categories: Estate Planning, POA, Retirement|0 Comments

Caution:  Your Traditional Asset Protection Plan is Set Up to Fail

You may be surprised to learn that not only has asset protection planning been around for a long time, but you have already engaged in it at some point during your life.  In fact, you probably have one or more types of traditional asset protection planning in place at this very moment.  The problem is in many cases the type of planning you have right now won’t be enough to protect you and your family. What is Asset Protection Planning? Asset protection planning is done to preserve and protect your property in advance of a claim, or the threat of [...]

By |2021-02-05T11:08:28+00:00December 23rd, 2019|Categories: Business Planning, Estate Planning, Retirement|0 Comments

How Does an IRA Fit Into Your Estate Plan?

When you think of IRAs, you probably think of retirement. But what happens to your IRA money after you’re gone? The answer depends on how you go about creating your estate plan and selecting beneficiaries, and you might be surprised to find out that your money could end up with the wrong people or cause an unexpected tax bill if you don’t take action ahead of time. What your IRA means for your estate plan Individual retirement accounts (IRAs) are often one of the biggest financial accounts you invest in over the course of your lifetime. When you’re working on [...]

By |2021-02-05T12:47:19+00:00December 10th, 2019|Categories: Estate Planning, Retirement|0 Comments

Estate Planning Considerations for Benefits Open Enrollment

The fall, generally late-October or early-November, is the time when employers send out summaries of employee benefits offered by the company and give employees the option to enroll in these benefits. These can generally include retirement plan options, health care, dental, vision, short and/or long-term disability, and life insurance coverage. Your employer may pay 100 percent of the premiums, split the costs with you, or you may have to pay all of the premiums yourself. Below are several considerations you should keep in mind once open enrollment begins. Benefits Explained When considering any retirement plan offered through your employer such [...]

By |2021-02-05T13:18:47+00:00November 7th, 2019|Categories: Estate Planning, Retirement|0 Comments

The More You Know: Reverse Mortgages & Estate Planning

You have likely seen several advertisements for reverse mortgages if you have spent any time watching television or surfing on the internet. The concept and sell is a simple one: as long as you own and live in your home, you can supplement your retirement income with a loan that you do not need to pay off. The trade-off when it comes to a reverse mortgage is that you are using your home’s equity to receive that extra retirement income. Even if a reverse mortgage is right for your circumstances, entering into a reverse mortgage is something that should be [...]

Retirement Planning for Business Owners

For many employees, saving for retirement is usually a matter of simply participating in their employer’s 401(k) plan and perhaps opening an IRA for some extra savings. But, when you’re the owner of a business, planning for retirement requires proactivity and strategy.  It’s not just the dizzying array of choices for retirement accounts, there’s also planning for the business itself.  Who will run the business after your retirement?  Additionally, your estate plan must integrate into your retirement and business transition strategy. Owners of businesses (like employees and everyone else) want to make sure they will have enough money in retirement.  [...]

Rewarding Your Employees by Giving Them the Business

Retiring from your business can a tough decision.  To ensure that what you have built continues on, there needs to be a plan for succession.  For some people, they have spent years grooming a child or other family member to take over, wanting the business to stay in the family.  Others look to sell to a third party for a quick way out that will also give them a nest egg for their next phase of life.  However, there is a third option–transferring the business to your employees.  If you like the idea of transferring your business to long-time faithful [...]

How to Leave Your Life Insurance and Retirement Plan to Your Minor Children

Your children are your pride and joy.  It is no surprise that at some point or another, every parent likely becomes concerned about who will care for a minor child or children if one or both parents die or are incapacitated.  From a financial perspective, many parents turn to life insurance in an effort to take care of their family in the event of death.  While it is true that life insurance is a particularly helpful financial tool to protect your loved ones, it is just as important to consider how to leave the proceeds to your minor children.  Beyond [...]

Roth IRA Conversions After Tax Reform… Still a Good Idea? What Are the Implications for Your Family if You Don’t Spend All the Money?

Twenty years ago, the Roth IRA first became available to investors as a financial tool for their estate planning needs. These accounts have maintained their popularity because unlike their traditional IRA counterpart, a Roth IRA provides account owners tax-free income during retirement. In fact, many people chose to convert their traditional IRA or 401(k) plan into a Roth IRA to benefit from this long-term tax advantage. (Of course, there is a current tax bill that has to be considered when you make a conversion.) The recently enacted tax reform, however, has removed one helpful opportunity: the ability to recharacterize — [...]

By |2021-09-21T18:21:13+00:00August 23rd, 2018|Categories: Estate Planning, Retirement|Tags: , |0 Comments

Financial Smarts Peak At 50, Here’s How to Protect Your Older Self

A recent study conducted by Texas Tech University concluded that the ability to make smart financial decisions peaks at age 50.  This decline was observed in both men and women, making both sexes equally vulnerable to financial fraud as they age. 4 Tips for Protecting Your Finances From Scams, Shams and Schemes as You Age In “4 Ways to Protect Your Retirement Money From Scammers (and Your Future Self)” (, Liz Weston points out that fraud victims age 65 and older lost an average of $30,000, and one in ten lost more than $100,000. Now that I have your attention, [...]

By |2021-09-21T19:32:21+00:00November 16th, 2015|Categories: Estate Planning, Retirement|Tags: |0 Comments

5 Most Expensive States for Retirees in 2015

While there are many factors to consider when choosing the place where you will retire, the ones that will impact your wallet may be the most important.  Why?  Because having a low crime rate and beautiful weather will be irrelevant if high costs deplete your retirement nest egg faster than anticipated. Recently compared cost-of-living and tax-rate data from’s list of “Best and Worst States to Retire” and Kiplinger’s list of “10 Worst States for Retirement” to come up with their list of “The Most Expensive States to Retire In.”  We’ve added Genworth’s “2015 Cost of Care Survey” to [...]

By |2021-09-21T19:40:41+00:00July 16th, 2015|Categories: Estate Planning, Retirement|0 Comments A New Resource for Older Americans and Their Families

More than 10,000 people turn 65 in the U.S. every day according to (, a new website recently launched by the Obama administration.  The goal of this website is to act as gateway for older Americans and their families, friends and caregivers to locate information about leading a healthy lifestyle, options for health care, preventing elder abuse, and retirement planning. Healthy Aging According to the website, healthy eating habits, physical activity, and involvement in your community help contribute to living a long, productive, and meaningful life.  This section of the website offers links to dietary guidelines for older Americans, the American [...]

By |2021-09-21T19:44:18+00:00March 19th, 2015|Categories: Estate Planning, Retirement|Tags: , |0 Comments
Go to Top