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Financial Homework Before The Year Ends

As we approach the end of the year, we all too often become so busy that we forget to attend to some very important issues.  Just as we should remember to change the batteries in our smoke detectors on the 1st of April [National Smoke Alarm Day] we should equally be vigilant to check a few other things in December. Find a day to devote a few hours to the following: Insurance policies: December is a wonderful time to check your

Ten Year-End Tax Tips for 2018

Ten Year-End Tax Tips for 2018 Here are 10 things to consider as you weigh potential tax moves between now and the end of the year. 1. Set aside time to plan Effective planning requires that you have a good understanding of your current tax situation, as well as a reasonable estimate of how your circumstances might change next year. There’s a real opportunity for tax savings if you’ll be paying taxes at a lower rate in one year than in the other.

How can I safely shop online this holiday season?

Shopping online is especially popular during the holiday season, when many people prefer to avoid the crowds and purchase gifts with a few clicks of a mouse. However, with this convenience comes the danger of having your personal and financial information stolen by computer hackers. Before you click, you might consider the following tips for a safer online shopping experience. Pay by credit instead of debit. Credit card payments can be withheld if there is a dispute, but debit cards are typically

Life Insurance with a Refund

Comparatively speaking, of all the different types of life insurance available, term is usually the least expensive. Generally, term life insurance provides protection for a stated or defined period of time, usually from one year to 30 years. If you die during the coverage term, your beneficiary receives the death benefit from the policy. But what if you outlive the term? With return of premium (ROP) life insurance, you receive the return of all your premium payments at the end

Estate Planning – FREE Seminar

The occasion of a family member’s death is never easy. Not only does a family begin the grieving process, but they must plan funerals and events to honor the life of the deceased, but oftentimes, they must also face the overwhelming task of settling the estate. Estate planning is not often a point of consideration for most until it’s too late. Perhaps the largest contributing factor to this procrastination is a lack of clarity regarding estate plans, their purpose, and

Medicare: Complicated or Complex?

As Autumn arrives, we start to see a lot of attention being given to two things: political campaigns and Medicare Insurance. I won’t even try to address the former in this blog. (As an aside: My hope is that those who are able, will go to the polls on Election day and vote for the candidates of their choice. Participation does matter.) As for the latter, I often hear from clients: “Why does Medicare need to be so complicated?” While

What are the new rules for 401(k) hardship withdrawals?

The Bipartisan Budget Act passed in early 2018 relaxed some of the rules governing hardship withdrawals from 401(k)s and similar plans. Not all plans offer hardship withdrawals, but the ones that do will be required to comply for plan years beginning in 2019. In order to take a hardship withdrawal from a 401(k) or similar plan, a plan participant must demonstrate an “immediate and heavy financial need,” as defined by the IRS. (For details, visit the IRS website and search for

5 Ways an Estate Plan Protects Your Family

It’s a known fact that many people do not have an estate plan in place. This procrastination may occur because it is a painful topic to address, or individuals think there is plenty of time to plan. This helpful infographic from Brighthouse Financial shows the importance of estate planning for everyone:   Source: https://www.brighthousefinancial.com/education/estate-planning/5-ways-an-estate-plan-protects-your-family/    

Mid-Year Planning: Tax Changes to Factor In

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, passed in December of last year, fundamentally changes the federal tax landscape for both individuals and businesses. Many of the provisions in the legislation are permanent, others (including most of the tax cuts that apply to individuals) expire at the end of 2025. Here are some of the significant changes you should factor in to any mid-year tax planning. You should also consider reviewing your situation with a tax professional. New lower marginal income tax

Mary Ann Pierce, Harvey Koenig and Jon Selzer HONORED AS TOP ADVISORS

Local financial advisors received awards for commitment to clients Orlando, FL – Mary Ann Pierce, Harvey Koenig and Jon Selzer were honored as a 2017 top advisor of Cadaret, Grant & Co., Inc., a broker/dealer based in Syracuse, New York. Of over 900 advisors associated with Cadaret, Grant, Mary Ann, Harvey and Jon were among the 20% who qualified for the prestigious award. Mary Ann, Harvey and Jon attended the company’s annual top advisors conference, this year located in Orlando, Florida, May