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Drafting a power of attorney that reduces the chances of abuse

A power of attorney is one of the most important estate planning documents you can create, but it is also one that can be misused. While it isn’t possible to entirely prevent the possibility of abuse, there are steps you can take in drafting the document to greatly reduce the chances. A power of attorney allows a person you appoint — your “attorney-in-fact” or “agent” — to act in place of you —the “principal” — for

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Four Social Security myths debunked

There are a lot of misconceptions surrounding the Social Security system. Here are four common myths and the facts about how Social Security works and its future prospects. Myth 1: You should collect benefits early. This is one of the biggest Social Security myths. Beneficiaries can start taking retirement benefits as early as age 62, but if you take Social Security between age 62 and your full retirement age (which ranges from 65 to 67, depending

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Don’t make the mistake of not signing up for Medicare supplemental coverage

If you are turning 65 and enrolling in Medicare as a healthy senior, do you really need to sign up for Medicare’s supplemental coverage as well? Not signing up initially could be very costly down the road.  With all the deductibles, copayments and coverage exclusions, basic Medicare pays for only about half of all medical costs. To augment Medicare’s coverage, you can purchase a supplemental, or “Medigap,” insurance policy from a private insurer.  There are 10

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Should you prepare a Medicaid application yourself, or get help?

A decision on whether to prepare and file a Medicaid application on your own or hire help depends on answers to these questions: How old is the applicant? How complicated is the applicant’s financial situation? Is the individual applying for community or nursing home benefits? How much time do you have available? How organized are you? Medicaid is the health care program for individuals without other insurance or those whose insurance does not cover what they

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2020 Retirement Plan Limits

As part of your 2020 planning, now is the time to review funding your retirement accounts. By establishing your contribution goals at the beginning of each year, the financial impact of saving for your future should be more manageable. Here are annual contribution limits: Retirement Plans 2019 2020 Change Age 50 or older catch up IRA: Traditional $6,000 $6,000 none add: $1,000 IRA: Roth $6,000 $6,000 none add: $1,000 IRA: SIMPLE $13,000 $13,500 +$500 add: $3,000

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The Highest Taxed Money in America

How the lottery preys on Americans If you were told to voluntarily pay 75% of your wages to government-sponsored programs for the rare chance of getting everyone else’s remaining 25%, would you do it? Most everyone enjoys dreaming of winning it big in the lottery. Large pots of money are publicized on the evening news and lucky multi-million-dollar winners are always given the media spotlight. Little do most people know, federal and state governments are quietly

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It’s Time to Prioritize Inventory Management

Extraordinarily low interest rates and a rapidly evolving business climate has made inventory management a lost art. Other business initiatives may seem to be more urgent and impactful, but in reality, mastering inventory levels is a key to most successful and growing businesses. Here are reasons why prioritizing your inventory management is a must: Less shrink. Shrinkage represents cash that goes to waste because inventory is damaged or past sell date. It is a sign of

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There’s Still Time to Fund Your IRA

There is still time to make a contribution to a traditional IRA or Roth IRA for the 2019 tax year. The annual contribution limit is $6,000 or $7,000 if you are age 50 or over. Prior to making a contribution, if you (or your spouse) are an active participant in an employer’s qualified retirement plan (a 401(k), for example), you will need to make sure your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) does not exceed certain thresholds.

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Make Your Cash Worth More

Banking tips to help you cash in Your cash is parked. Do you know if it’s making or losing you money? For instance, letting it sit in a non-interest-bearing account is a waste of earnings potential. It’s actually losing money if you factor in inflation! Here are some ideas to help you make the most of your banked cash: Understand your bank accounts. Not all bank accounts are created equal. Interest rates, monthly fees, minimum balances, direct

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January 2020

This month: January 1 – New Year’s Day January 15 – 4th Quarter Estimated Payments Due January 20 – Martin Luther King Jr. Day Start tax planning for the new year – Adjust withholdings – Organize filing records – Schedule tax consultation – Rebalance investment portfolio   Welcome 2020. A new year calls for a fresh look at your financial strategies. Consider how to make the most of your savings accounts — and don’t forget you

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