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401(k) Plans

What Is a 401(k) Plan? A 401(k) plan is a self-directed, qualified retirement plan established by an employer to provide future retirement benefits for employees. Employee contributions are made on a pre-tax basis, and employer contributions are often tax deductible. If you have a Roth 401(k) option, your contributions are made with after-tax dollars, and […]


Retirement Plan Distributions

Retirement Plan Distributions When it comes to receiving the fruits of your labor — the money accumulated in your employer-sponsored retirement plan — you are faced with a few broad options. Should you take the payout as systematic payments, a lifetime annuity, or a lump sum? Systematic withdrawals Some retirement plans may allow you to […]


Self-Employed Retirement Plans

What Is a Self-Employed Retirement Plan? A self-employed retirement plan is a tax-deferred retirement savings program for self-employed individuals. In the past, the term “Keogh plan” or “H.R. 10 plan” was used to distinguish a retirement plan established by a self-employed individual from a plan established by a corporation or other entity. However, self-employed retirement […]


Social Security Income

Social Security Income Estimating your future Social Security benefits used to be a difficult task, but not any longer. For an estimate of your projected benefits, go to www.ssa.gov/estimator. The retirement estimator gives estimates based on your actual Social Security earnings record. The website form will ask you for a number of facts, including your […]


Future of Social Security

Will Social Security Retire Before You Do? People have traditionally seen Social Security benefits as the foundation of their retirement planning programs. The Social Security contributions deducted from workers’ paychecks have, in effect, served as a government-enforced retirement savings plan. However, the Social Security system is under increasing strain. Better health care and longer life […]


Planning Options

What Are My Retirement Planning Options? There are a variety of retirement planning options that can meet your needs. Your employer funds some; you fund some. Bear in mind that, in most cases, early withdrawals before age 59½ may be subject to a 10% federal income tax penalty. The latest date to begin required minimum distributions is usually April […]


IRA Rollover

What Is an IRA Rollover? If you leave a job or retire, you might want to transfer the money you’ve invested in one or more employer-sponsored retirement plans to an individual retirement account (IRA). An IRA rollover is an effective way to keep your money accumulating tax deferred. Using an IRA rollover, you transfer your […]


Stretch IRAs

What Is a “Stretch” IRA? Finding a method to leave a lasting legacy to your loved ones without increasing their tax burdens can be difficult and complicated. A “stretch” IRA may be a useful approach that can benefit your heirs for generations to come. A stretch IRA is not a special type of IRA but […]


Medicare Coverage

What Does Medicare Cover? Medicare is the federal health insurance program for persons age 65 and older as well as certain disabled individuals. In 1965, Medicare was enacted to provide a “safety net” of health-care coverage for qualifying individuals. Medicare is packaged in two major parts. Part A is hospital insurance protection. It covers hospitalization, […]


Long-Term Care Costs

Am I Prepared for Long-Term Care Expenses? In general, Americans are not sufficiently prepared to pay for long-term care. Many of them go through their lives simply hoping that they won’t ever need it. Unfortunately, in the event that you or a loved one does need long-term care, hope won’t be enough to protect you […]


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