Category: Financial Planning & Insurance

Elder Law and Estate Planning: An Interview with Chris Petillo Part 1
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Elder Law and Estate Planning: An Interview with Chris Petillo Part 1 | Michael Fliegelman

{3:48 minutes to read} Today, our guest is Christopher Petillo, Certified Elder Law Attorney (CELA), and Certified Public Accountant (CPA) with the law firm of Feldman, Kramer & Monaco, P.C. He is an attorney whose expertise is in the areas of elder law and estate planning. Michael Fliegelman: Over the years we’ve been writing a lot about long-term care and its effect on retirement planning. Chris, if you could share with us some of the traps for the unwary. Some of the things that you see constantly in your practice for which people have a blind spot.

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How to Make It on Your Own, Especially Financially
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Authored by , re: Family & Divorce, FINANCIAL ARTICLES, Financial Planning & Insurance, on .
How to Make It on Your Own, Especially Financially | Laura Bonarrigo

My stepmom reminded me that during the process of divorcing, I was most fixated on how I was going to financially survive. It was the most pressing of concerns since I was a stay-at-home mom who hadn’t really earned an income while my children were young. I know this is incredibly common. It’s also first chakra safety and security issues. The distress can keep you up at night, it can be paralyzing, and the thought of returning to earning after being out of the job market in this (or any) economy is a blow to the ego, brings up all our insecurities, and makes us face the reality of age.

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4 Rookie Mistakes “Chumps” Cheated on Make…
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4 Rookie Mistakes “Chumps” Cheated on Make… | Vickie Adams

Last week, I flew to Washington DC for the weekend in order to attend a book launch and after-party for author Tracy Schorn at the National Press Club. Not only does Tracy write the daily blog chumplady.com, with over 10 million views, but her new book Leave a Cheater, Gain a Life is a #1 new best seller. Tracy has helped thousands of blog readers understand the actions and language behind serial infidelity and the mental shift needed to extricate themselves.

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Healthcare and Retirement Planning; an Interview with Peter Stahl Part 2
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Healthcare and Retirement Planning; an Interview with Peter Stahl Part 2 | Michael Fliegelman

(3 minutes to read} In Part 1 of my interview with Peter Stahl, an expert on healthcare and financial planning, and author of the book,Top of the First – The Convergence of Healthcare and Financial Planning, we talked about what should be on the checklist to best prepare for retirement. As our interview continued, I asked Peter if there was anything else he would like to share with our readers:

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Know How to Protect Yourself Financially Within a Relationship?
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Know How to Protect Yourself Financially Within a Relationship? | Vickie Adams

When you enter into a new relationship, you display the best version of yourself—the rose-colored glasses are shiny and new. As the relationship progresses, perhaps you decide to move in together. It is at this point that a serious discussion needs to happen—one that people are afraid to have. What happens if and when those rose-colored glasses become fogged up, scratched, or broken, especially in regard to financial matters?

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Healthcare and Retirement Planning; an Interview with Peter Stahl
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Healthcare and Retirement Planning; an Interview with Peter Stahl | Michael Fliegelman

{3:00 minutes to read}Today we’re very pleased to introduce Mr. Peter Stahl, author of the book called Top of the First – the Convergence of Healthcare and Financial Planning. Healthcare and financial planning is interesting subject matter as more and more people are approaching retirement I recently met Peter at an event and he provided to me some great food for thought. The topic of health care is prevalent in our nation, in both the political landscape and certainly in the financial services industry. People approaching retirement increasingly site the cost of healthcare as their top financial concern. Many retirees will spend the largest percentage of their income on health and medical costs, larger than recreation and housing combined.

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Should You Execute a Postnup or File for Divorce?
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Should You Execute a Postnup or File for Divorce? | Vickie Adams

If you’re the higher wage earner married to a husband who is chronically “underemployed,” this can cause a lot of resentment. Over time, resentment stemming from an imbalance of money or imbalance of responsibility spills over into other areas and, subsequently, degrades a marriage. Recently, a reader of this blog requested I write on this topic, as many women now find themselves in this very same situation.

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Insuring the Global Society
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Insuring the Global Society | Michael Fliegelman

{1:50 minutes to read } MassMutual offers guidance for serving today’s global society by offering insurance for foreign citizens residing in the US and US citizens who live abroad part time. Check out the brochure attached to learn how you can provide quality insurance for foreign nationals and American’s living abroad. Life Underwriting – Foreign National and Non-Resident Requirement Guide

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What Can We Do For You?
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What Can We Do For You?|Michael Fliegelman

{1:06 minutes to read} I urge you to click on the video below to learn about our planning process and how we’re able to help our clients plan and organize their financial lives. We help them to move from what we call the “financial junk drawer” to an organized model that can help them see their entire financial world on one piece of paper. When you are building a home, you start out with a blueprint. We do the same for your ”financial home” with our planning process. It’s a wonderful interactive process that helps you clean up the financial junk drawer, create a place where you feel organized, under control and able to determine the best direction for moving forward.

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Estate Planning
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Estate Planning | Michael Fliegelman

{3:48 minutes to read} The federal government continually changes the rules of the game when it comes to estate taxes, making it difficult to plan our lives. Just because the exemption amount for taxable estates has moved up to $5,450,000 per person this year, (a couple can pass 2 times that or $10,900,000), does not give people the ability to properly plan their estate by ignoring estate planning. The estate tax is an important part of estate planning, but it’s certainly not the only part. I urge everybody to plan and organize their financial world. Review current plans, arrangements and documents such as :  

  • Wills
  • Trusts
  • Business Agreements
  • Life Insurance
  • Titling
  • Health Care Proxies
  • Power of Attorney
  • Living Wills
  • Beneficiary Arrangements

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3 Details NOT to Be Put Off to Your “Post-Divorce” Checklist
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3 Details NOT to Be Put Off to Your “Post-Divorce” Checklist | Vickie Adams

Most people don’t realize there is anything left to do after the divorce agreement is finalized. Once they’ve hammered out the details of the divorce settlement, signed on the dotted line, and accepted their fate, many clients assume that their attorney is going to take care of all the transitional issues for every item. However, this is often not the case.

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Disability Insurance Won’t Grow Your Retirement Funds
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{1:48 minutes to read} Retireguard is a MassMutual Disability Income product or rider that can be attached to a MassMutual Disability Policy or sold as a stand-alone disability product. It is a unique policy that is designed to help a disabled individual save money during a period of disability. In a traditional scenario, your clients either have disability insurance or they don’t. Even if they have disability income insurance, most of the policies sold today, end at age 65. So, if they are disabled from 55 to 65, what might happen is at age 65, they may find themselves in a difficult position because they have been unable to save money for retirement for the past 10 years. This program enables them, even if they have full disability insurance, to insure their retirement savings.

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Should I Try to Keep the House? (Divorce & Mortgage Issues)
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Should I Try to Keep the House? (Divorce & Mortgage Issues) | Vickie Adams

One of the most complex questions in litigation or mediation is, “Should I try to keep the house?” This calculation requires accurate financial analysis prior to negotiation to evaluate whether (or not) it’s a worthwhile want. Because the marital home is such an emotional trigger, it often leads clients to override logic with wishful thinking—“Yes, I think I can pull it off.”

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Succession Planning: How to Make Your Business Your Legacy
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Succession Planning: How to Make Your Business Your Legacy | Harlan Levine

{2:20 minutes to read} Many business owners fail to realize that the small businesses they started years ago are now very valuable. Therefore, transitioning a business from one generation to the next is extremely important. If you are a business owner, it is critical to have a succession plan in case something happens to you — or if you just want to take it a little easier. A succession plan is important to ensure a smooth ownership transition with minimal uncertainty and conflict. It usually involves:

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Improving Retirement Incomes
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Improving Retirement Incomes | Michael Fliegelman

{3:42 minutes to read} We’re now deep into a period of time where the market has been quite volatile and people are looking for alternative solutions for their retirement planning. Forbes magazine published an article called Improving Retirement Outcomes with Investments, Life Insurances, and Income Annuities [1], that might help you in your planning. Often people read articles cautioning that annuities and life insurance are no good. People are advised to invest in x, y, and z products and hang on for the ride, despite the ups and downs. The challenge is that as human beings go through periods where markets go down significantly, they get worried. Not knowing what will happen causes stress for them and challenges their belief as to whether they’re doing the right thing.

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Demystifying Annuities
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Demystifying Annuities| Michael Fliegelman

An annuity can be an income stream that may guarantee an increase for the rest of your life. Annuities are becoming more and more, a pivotal and important part of our clients’ retirement plans. One of the income streams that everybody is very familiar with, is Social Security. When we reach social security retirement age, we choose how we’re going to receive that income for life. Social Security is the foundation for many people’s retirement. There are numerous types of annuities:

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Have You Rebalanced Your Portfolio Lately?
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Have You Rebalanced Your Portfolio Lately? | Jeff Holland

{2:30 minutes to read} Maintaining a healthy balance is important in many areas of life;you constantly monitor and make ongoing adjustments to your monthly finances, your health, etc. But did you know it’s just as important to maintain balance & consistency in your investment portfolio? This adjustment is called “rebalancing.” Some people call it “pruning.” Just as you might prune a tree, you also need to prune off some of the returns of a high-performing fund, then plant some more seeds in the ones that have done less well over the last year.

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Start the Year on the Right Financial Foot – Create a Budget!
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Start the Year on the Right Financial Foot – Create a Budget! | Bob Bordett

If you got divorced in 2015 or are preparing to divorce in 2016, a budget can become a road map for your financial well-being. Here are some tips to makes budgeting easier:

  • Ensure you have broad categories in your budget. Too many details make budgeting more difficult than it needs to be.
  • Pay yourself first—include a savings account category in your budget. Take care of yourself and your needs, as well as the household.

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The Hidden Benefits of “Tax Season”
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The Hidden Benefits of “Tax Season” | Vickie Adams

In most marriages, it is not unusual for one spouse to have a more “hands-on” role or a better understanding of the marital finances. For a variety of reasons (fear, control, stereotypical gender roles), the spouse who is less focused on “how the money works” may not possess the information necessary to understand or accurately convey a complete picture of his/her own financial reality. Click here to read Vickie Adams' full article...

Key Numbers for 2016
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Key Numbers for 2016 | Michael Fliegelman

{1:36 minutes to read} I’m pleased to provide you a document we call The Key Numbers for 2016. The document outlines changes that the government makes each year pertaining to financial planning, pensions, estate planning, income taxes, etc. Just as a note, the Estate Tax Exemption went up from $5.43 to $5.45 million. The maximum tax rate stayed the same at 40%. Portability is still part of the plan so any unused estate tax exemption at the death of a first spouse allows for the surviving spouse to benefit from the unused exemption. The annual exclusion remains at $14,000.

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A New Year’s Resolution for Every Age
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A New Year’s Resolution for Every Age | Susan Moussi

{2:00 minutes to read} At this time of year, many of us are thinking about what our resolutions will be in the new year. We usually resolve to do things we think will enrich our lives at the time. But sometimes, with the benefit of hindsight, we see later that we could have made wiser resolutions and priorities. I have more than 30 years of working experience and 55 years of living experience, and would like to share my own work and life suggestions for five age ranges:

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MassMutual Announces Its 2016 Dividends
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MassMutual Announces Its 2016 Dividends | Michael Fliegelman

{1 minute to read} MassMutual’s board of directors has approved an estimated dividend payout of $1.7 billion to its eligible participating policyowners in 2016. Of the estimated $1.6 billion dividend payout, an estimated $1.55 billion has been approved for eligible participating policyowners who have purchased whole life insurance The payout is a nearly $100 million increase over 2015 and the 4th consecutive year MassMutual has reached new records.

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Thinking of Hiding Assets? Don’t!
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Thinking of Hiding Assets? Don’t! | Vickie Adams

In 1996, wife Denise Rossi purposefully hid lottery winnings in the amount of $1.3 million from her husband of 25 years. When her ex-husband realized what she had done, he filed a motion to set aside the divorce agreement. Denise was found guilty of fraud and her ex was awarded all $1.3 million of the lottery winnings.

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I’m retired! I don’t need life insurance!
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I’m retired! I don’t need life insurance! | Michael Fliegelman

{3:30 minutes to read} There was an article in the May 13, 2015, edition of Forbes entitled “Improving Retirement Outcomes With Investment, Life Insurance, And Income Annuities.” This article does a really great job in pointing out how life insurance can help change the outcomes for people in retirement. Most people feel that once retired, life insurance is no longer a tool they need, because their kids are on their way, either in college or on their own. Life insurance at retirement, however, becomes a tool that gives people more options and flexibility.

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Year-End Tax Planning – – Have You Started Yours?
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Year-End Tax Planning – – Have You Started Yours? | Michael Fliegelman

{1:24 minutes to read} As 2015 winds down, it is incumbent upon all people to start doing some year-end tax planning. Look at your current situation and determine what is it that you need to do to minimize your taxes. Do the right type of planning in 2015, so when tax time comes, you have the least amount of problems.

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      Profit sharing 401k plan; or
 
    SEP plan.
 

4 Ways to Minimize the Cost of Divorce
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4 Ways to Minimize the Cost of Divorce | Vickie Adams

Whether mediating or litigating your divorce, costs can escalate quickly, especially if you are facing a complicated settlement. There are some simple ways, however, to help keep the cost of your divorce down. Here are 4 of them:

  1. Limit Email Communications

Communicating with any divorce professional by email can substantially increase the costs of your divorce.

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The Pain of Discipline vs the Pain of Regret
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The Pain of Discipline vs the Pain of Regret | Michael Fliegelman

{5:42 minutes to read} Today, I have a very special guest joining us, Mr. Mark Bullock. He shared with me a story that made me think about a concept that I learned many years ago; the pain of discipline versus the pain of regret. Elder care is a huge problem for many families. Once somebody has gone through this kind of process, they look at the decisions pertaining to insurance very differently. Mark is going to share a little bit about his family situation and how it has been affected by these issues.

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Investment Planning for a Safe and Secure Retirement
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Investment Planning for a Safe and Secure Retirement | Michael Fliegelman

{4:42 minutes to read} Today we’re going to talk about our services in the area of money management and investment planning.  With us is my colleague, Mr. John Male, Certified Financial Planner and the Director of Financial Planning at G&G Planning Concepts, a registered investment advisory firm based in New York City.  John is going to talk to us about how we approach money management and investment planning so that clients who are interested in our services, can have a better idea of how we can help them.

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Divorcing Later in Life? Be Financially Prepared
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Divorcing Later in Life? Be Financially Prepared | Susan Moussi

{2:00 minutes to read} Uncertainty. Unknowns. Regardless of age, divorce creates questions and concerns about the future. Depending on the age of the couple, the focus of these concerns varies. Younger couples are generally more concerned with how they can maintain the lifestyle that their children have grown accustomed to now that there are two separate households. Children, rather than retirement, for example, becomes the focus.

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Divorce Planning Strategies: Early Access to Retirement Funds Without Penalties
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Divorce Planning Strategies: Early Access to Retirement Funds Without Penalties | Vickie Adams

It’s not unusual that a couple’s assets with the most equity are the marital residence and various retirement plans. So, what do you want your life to look like post divorce? Do you want to keep your marital home? Do you want the security of a funded retirement plan? It’s critical to understand your financial priorities post divorce as it takes strategic planning to achieve your goals. Engaging a CDFA™ (Certified Divorce Financial Advisor) or Divorce Financial Planner early in the process can be critical to a successful post-divorce outcome.

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