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  • As the COVID-19 pandemic taught many Americans, serious illness may strike at any time and any age. Of course, in ordinary times, older Americans are at risk of becoming physically or mentally incapacitated. So if you haven't thought about who'll handle your personal and financial affairs in the event you can't, given it serious consideration now. Let's look at two potential solutions: a power of ...

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    Effective Estate Planning requires attention to a number of important details. The following checklist will get you started developing an estate management plan. Consult with your professional adviser after reviewing the following questions. Do you have a will? A will enables you to specify who you want to inherit your property and other assets. A will also enables you to name a guardian for your...

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    If you're nearing retirement, you've likely paid into the Social Security system your entire career. It's only fitting that you finally cash in on the Social Security benefits that are rightfully yours. But when should you start receiving benefits — at the first available date, at the latest date or somewhere between those dates? The answer depends on your personal circumstances and preferences....

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    Creating a budget may seem like a complicated and unnecessary burden for most people, but a budget can be a valuable tool for managing your money. Instead of thinking about it as just another thing to do, think about how a carefully constructed budget can help you reduce expenses and optimize the way you spend. Why do you need a budget? First of all, income does not always equal expenses. A budget...

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    A lot can change over a lifetime — including with your wealth, family composition and priorities. That's why you need to revise your estate plan as you progress through life. Milestones such as becoming a parent and retiring can require everything from estate plan edits to estate plan overhauls. Here are some of the issues you should be considering at each life stage. Starting Out If you've ...

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    Myth 1: You have to contribute to a 529 in your home state. That statement is false with regard to 529 college-savings plans, in which money is invested in a portfolio of securities on behalf of a beneficiary. Any U.S. resident can contribute to a 529 college-savings plan in any state. Contributing to a plan offered by your home state might offer an added bonus in the form of a state income tax ...

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    If you're experiencing financial distress during the COVID-19 crisis, you might be thinking about tapping into your Roth IRA to improve your cash situation. But before withdrawing money from a Roth account, it's important to understand the federal income tax consequences, especially if you're under 59½. Common Misconception You may think that all withdrawals from Roth IRAs are ...

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    Keep these ages in mind to boost your retirement benefits and avoid penalties. Age 50 At age 50, workers in certain qualified retirement plans are able to begin making annual catch-up contributions in addition to their normal contributions. Those who participate in 401(k), 403(b), and 457 plans can contribute an additional $6,500 per year for 2020 (unchanged from 2019).* Those who participate in ...

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    Economic fallout from the COVID-19 crisis may cause some cash-strapped individuals to default on loans they've taken out from company qualified retirement plans, including 401(k) and profit-sharing plans. Defaulting on a plan loan will cause adverse tax and retirement-saving consequences. Here are the details. Retirement Plan Loan Basics A participant in an employer-sponsored qualified retirement...

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    The IRS recently issued guidance related to coronavirus-related distributions allowed under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Notice 2020-50 and Notice 2020-51 apply to qualified individuals, employers and eligible retirement plans. The guidance is lengthy and complex and includes an expansion of the definition of who is a qualified individual that can take a ...

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