The Future of Social Security and Medicare

Most Americans will eventually receive Social Security and Medicare benefits. Each year, the Trustees of the Social Security and Medicare Trust Funds release lengthy reports to Congress that assess the health of these important programs. The newest reports, released on April 22, 2019, discuss the current financial condition and ongoing financial challenges that both programs …

What is a rollover IRA, and do I need one?

Generally, the term “rollover IRA” refers to an IRA that you establish to receive funds from an employer retirement plan like a 401(k). A rollover IRA is also sometimes referred to as a “conduit IRA.” When you roll funds over from an employer plan to an IRA, your financial institution may suggest that you use …

Don’t Forget to Include Memory Loss When Planning for Retirement

When planning for retirement, an important factor that is often overlooked is the potential for declining cognitive skills associated with aging. Cognitive impairment (CI), often attributable to dementia or Alzheimer’s disease, can have profound implications for your overall health and well-being, particularly during retirement. The cost of care can absorb income and significantly deplete retirement …

Setting Up A SIMPLE IRA Plan: It’s Simple!

Looking for a retirement plan for your employees that’s easy and inexpensive to administer? Well, there may be a simple answer: the Savings Incentive Match Plan for Employees of Small Employers, better known as the SIMPLE IRA plan. A SIMPLE IRA plan lets your employees defer up to $12,500 in 2017 ($15,500 if age 50 …

Four Numbers You Need To Know

When it comes to your finances, you might easily overlook some of the numbers that really count. Here are four to pay attention to now that might really matter in the future. 1. Retirement plan contribution rate What percentage of your salary are you contributing to a retirement plan? Making automatic contributions through an employer-sponsored …

Are you ready to retire?

Here are some questions to ask yourself when deciding whether or not you are ready to retire. Is your nest egg adequate? It may be obvious, but the earlier you retire, the less time you’ll have to save, and the more years you’ll be living off your retirement savings. The average American can expect to …

What is an ERISA fiduciary?

The Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) was enacted in 1974 to protect employees who participate in retirement plans and certain other employee benefit plans. At the time, there were concerns that pension plan funds were being mismanaged, causing participants to lose benefits they had worked so hard to earn. ERISA protects the interests of …

Is It Wise to Trade Your Pension for a Lump Sum?

Most private employers have already replaced traditional pensions, which promise lifetime income payments in retirement, with defined contribution plans such as 401(k)s. But 15% of private-sector workers and 75% of state and local government workers still participate in traditional pensions.1 Altogether, 35% of workers say they (and/or their spouse) have pension benefits with a current …

401(k) Withdrawals: Beware the Penalty Tax

You’ve probably heard that if you withdraw taxable amounts from your 401(k) or 403(b) plan before age 59½, you may be socked with a 10% early distribution penalty tax on top of the federal income taxes you’ll be required to pay. But did you know that the Internal Revenue Code contains quite a few exceptions …