Health Care at the Forefront

30 July
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In recent news, we’ve witnessed the fallout of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, where officials falsified records to hide the amount of time former service members have had to wait for medical appointments. As if health care doesn’t get enough bad press, this is just one more scandal indicating the dire need to overhaul the industry, its delivery mechanisms and costs. Both the House and the Senate have passed versions of a VA bill to help rectify the situation, and...

The Printed Word

21 July
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We blog, tweet, post.  Read, skim, search.  We can now receive so much of our information online, on demand, and choose exactly what sources from which to receive it.  We’re no longer limited to three nightly newscasts and our daily local paper. (CLICK HERE to read the article, “The Future of the News Business:  A Monumental Twitter Stream All in One Place,” from Andreessen Horowitz, accessed June 6, 2014.) But with such a cache of information comes a few disadvantages,...

Family Disaster Plan

13 June
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A family disaster plan is your personal plan for how you and your family will deal with an emergency situation if one arises.  It’s important that every member of your family understands your family disaster plan and is ready to implement it, perhaps at a moment’s notice. Suggestions for your family disaster plan include: Understand the types of natural disasters that are most likely to strike the area where you live (hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, flooding).  Agree on what each family...

Life Insurance Gifts

29 May
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Regardless of your reasons for giving, a gift of life insurance can represent a substantial future gift to a favorite charity at relatively little cost to you.  You can: Make a Charity the Beneficiary of an Existing Policy:  If you have a life insurance policy you no longer need, you can name the charity as the beneficiary of the policy, meaning that the charity will receive the policy’s death benefit after you die.  While there are no current tax benefits...

What is an Annuity?

13 May
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In planning for financial security in retirement, an annuity can satisfy two basic objectives: 1. To accumulate retirement assets on a tax-deferred basis:  If you’re already contributing the maximum to IRAs and any employer-sponsored retirement plans and need to save more for retirement, a deferred annuity may be the answer to your retirement savings need. 2.  To convert retirement assets into an income that you cannot outlive:  On the other hand, if you’re near or at retirement, an immediate income...