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Trust and Estate Planning

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Helpful Advice When Attending a Funeral or Service

Death is an uncomfortable topic that most people do not like to discuss.  When someone dies, those that are closest to that person deal with unimaginable grief.  They may find it difficult to make it through the day, get out of bed or do routine things.  When someone experiences this type of pain, it’s a […]

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Significant Retirement Plan Changes Are Here

The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act, or SECURE Act which recently passed is one of the most significant pieces of retirement legislation in the last decade.  Here are some of the key provisions contained in the SECURE Act: Increase Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) Age From 70 ½ to 72 – The SECURE […]

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Top 5 Mistakes in Estate Plans – Does Yours Have Any?

The primary purpose of an estate plan is to provide for the thoughtful transition of asset ownership to intended heirs.  After a plan is drafted, mistakes can creep in and upset a carefully-drafted plan.  Below, are five of the more common problem areas to consider. 1. Misusing Joint Ownership Joint tenancy is a common form […]

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4 Things a Surviving Spouse Should Know About Social Security

The Social Security administration gives benefits to surviving spouses based on the deceased’s retirement benefit. If the survivor is already taking retirement benefits, they can take the higher of either their own or their deceased spouse’s benefit.  Rules on these benefits are based on the age of the survivor and if the deceased had begun […]

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Medicare 2019 – Key Enrollment Dates and Important Changes

The leaves are changing colors and a cool breeze is in the air, which means many retirees are securing their winter travel plans. However, before jumping on the plane to escape the cold winter months that lie ahead, it is also time for Medicare participants to decide if changes should be made to their health […]

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Updating an Estate Plan – Organizing Your Thoughts

Preparing an estate plan can be an intimidating process, since final instructions for a family’s assets are memorialized.  Upon death, those instructions are fixed – forever.  Estate plans should be reviewed frequently as family circumstances change – children mature into adults and in-laws are introduced into a family.  When children are very young, parents focus […]

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What happens to your belongings when you die?

As Financial Advisors, we put a lot of thought and effort into making sure that we have the proper beneficiary designations and titling on accounts for clients so that they are passed on appropriately someday in the future.  Much of our focus is on investment accounts, bank accounts, houses, etc. – but what happens to […]

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Yours, Mine, Ours – Financial Considerations for Blended Families

When I decided to get remarried, it was an exciting time for me and my (now) husband. What we quickly found, however, was that decisions we had made prior to our previous marriages, such as where we would live, financial decisions and now, disciplining and raising kids from our previous marriages, were not as straightforward […]

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Child’s UTMA is Ending – What Protection Exists?

Uniform Transfers to Minors Act, or UTMA, accounts are a popular way to hold investments and bank accounts for minors.  Such accounts are owned by the minor but controlled by a designated adult custodian.  The minor becomes the outright owner of the account assets when he or she reaches the age of majority specified in […]

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Top 2 Tax Changes That May Affect Your Retirement

There are likely substantial retirement account changes on the horizon which will alter planning for all current and future retirees.  Recently, the House passed the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement or SECURE Act. The SECURE Act is expected to pass the Senate in the coming months. The two most wide-reaching changes in the […]

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Honoring the Memory of a Loved One

When we lose someone that we love, we miss out on all the future memories that we never get to create together.  In many ways, this is difficult and unfair.  However, this doesn’t mean that the memories need to stop.  Here are some ways to preserve the memories of loved ones we have lost: Tell […]

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Working Wealthy – The Estate

One of the foundations of personal financial planning is estate planning. For some, it can be an unpleasant topic. Just ask my wife—she put up with my nagging and cajoling for nearly six months before we put our plan in place. I can’t blame her, pondering one’s own mortality is not an everyday task. In […]

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