Archive - 2010

1
Start 2010 On The Right Foot
2
Should I Take an Early Withdrawal From a Retirement Account?
3
Protect Yourself From Investment Fraud
4
How Are Medicare Premium Increases Calculated?
5
Should You Buy Long Term Care?

Start 2010 On The Right Foot

Start 2010 On The Right Foot It’s hard to believe that it’s 2010. Has it really been ten years since the Y2K scare?  While the world has changed over the last ten years, there are financial planning strategies that can help position ourselves for success. If you’re looking for a few things to implement as we turn the corner into another decade, read on!

Here are three things you can do to help positively position you for a successful 2010!

1. Timely file your taxes

Most people handle their personal taxes in a reactive manner. They don’t spend much time during the current tax year preparing …

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Should I Take an Early Withdrawal From a Retirement Account?

Taking early withdrawals from your retirement plans is rarely a good idea, and should only be considered when it’s the last possible option available to you, generally speaking.  But this article is more about the pain you could experience if you don’t handle a rollover correctly – bypassing the trustee-to-trustee transfer option and going with an indirect rollover.

Withholding Rule For Indirect Rollovers

In general, if you take an early withdrawal (pre-age 59½) from an IRA or a Qualified Retirement Plan (QRP) that includes pre-tax money, the custodian of the account is required to withhold and pay to the IRS …

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Protect Yourself From Investment Fraud

The media is full of stories about investment fraud and sales abuse. Wells Fargo was sued by the State of California for selling investments that were not as safe as reported. Bank of America was sued for involvement in a Ponzi scheme. Ameriprise paid a fine for selling products unsuited to clients retirement accounts. And of course the Bernie Madoff hedge fund scandal where people lost millions.Protect Yourself From Investment Fraud

Now is a great time to review some methods to protect yourself from possible investment fraud and misrepresentation.

1. If an investment salesman uses the following or similar phrases, then you should be …

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How Are Medicare Premium Increases Calculated?

If you are collecting Social Security and covered by Medicare, you may be wondering why your Medicare premium didn’t increase for 2010… or if it did increase, why did it – since it didn’t increase for so many others?

To understand this quandry, we need to look at the system for determining increases to Social Security benefits first.

Social Security – No COLA Increase for 2010

For the year 2010, there is no Cost-Of-Living Adjustment (COLA) in Social Security benefits.  This is reflected by the fact that the Consumer Price Index (CPI) had not increased for the year (as of …

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Should You Buy Long Term Care?

Q: How do I evaluate long term care insurance for myself and my spouse?  We’re both 45.  I heard it’s better to buy it when you’re young.

A: With the way the winds of change are blowing, it probably is a good idea to look into buying long term care insurance now vs. waiting.  Why?

  1. The price of long term care (LTC) has been increasing dramatically, a trend expected to continue for the foreseeable future.  Depending on the extent of the care needed, even individuals with substantial assets may have trouble covering these costs on their own.
  2. The price of
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