Five Tips for a Safer New Year for Your Family

As we ring in the New Year, one of your resolutions for the year should be to improve safety for you and your family.  There are many things we can all do better in terms of ensuring that we are safe and that our home and valuables are protected.  This year we offer up these five actions you can take to reduce the chances of one of your family members or a house guest getting hurt, and to see your possessions are well protected. Remember too that after the New Year, robbers are on the prowl, looking for opportunities to…

Continue ReadingFive Tips for a Safer New Year for Your Family

Losing Everything Due to Inadequate Auto Liability Coverage

All states set minimum coverage levels for drivers, but if you are involved in a serious accident, minimal coverage may not get you off the hook for the full extent of damages.  Your state's goal is to make the required insurance affordable, but in many cases the established minimum coverage is not adequate to cover the liability costs if you are found to be at fault in a costly accident. Even limits that are several tiers above the minimum may not be adequate for some drivers, because once those limits are exhausted, any remaining damages must be paid out of…

Continue ReadingLosing Everything Due to Inadequate Auto Liability Coverage

New Fitness Guidelines for Children and Adults

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has issued new fitness guidelines that recommend adults get two and a half hours of moderate exercise every week, at a minimum. The slogan of the new guidelines is "move more, sit less," in an attempt to address the two main reasons many of us don't get enough exercise. This new guidance is the first update to the guidelines since 2008, when they were first released. Here are the report's main suggestions: Adults At least two and a half hours of "moderate-intensity aerobic" exercise a week. Exercise should be done in intervals…

Continue ReadingNew Fitness Guidelines for Children and Adults

Executive Orders Take Aim at Medicare Drug Costs, More

President Trump in late September issued three executive orders that would affect Medicare outpatient drug prices, protect people with pre-existing conditions from health insurance pricing discrimination and end surprise billing.The main, and most substantive, order would fix prices that Medicare pays for outpatient and pharmacy-sold pharmaceuticals to the lowest prices offered in comparable developed countries.The Trump administration had announced in July that it would release an order on Medicare outpatient drug prices pending negotiations with the pharmaceutical industry. But after those talks failed to yield the results the administration had hoped for, the president decided to release the latest version…

Continue ReadingExecutive Orders Take Aim at Medicare Drug Costs, More

The SECURE Act Eliminates the ‘Stretch IRA’ – Here’s What to Do

The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act of 2019 (SECURE Act) eliminates the stretch IRA for most non-spouse beneficiaries, beginning with deaths in 2020.That means many taxpayers should look at revising their estate plans. Here's why. New IRA rulesPrior to the SECURE Act, which was a tax measure signed into law in December 2019, the law allowed heirs to "stretch" IRA distributions over their entire life expectancy. This means you could theoretically leave a large IRA to a grandchild, for example, and the distributions could be spread out over decades. This provided a significant tax deferral benefit for younger…

Continue ReadingThe SECURE Act Eliminates the ‘Stretch IRA’ – Here’s What to Do

Medicare’s Annual Enrollment

As Medicare Open Enrollment Nears, Here Are the Changes Medicare's Annual Enrollment Period begins Oct. 15. and runs through Dec. 7. This is the time to reassess your Medicare plans.  As you get started, you should ask yourself: Am I satisfied with my current plan? Am I comfortable maintaining it for another year? Are the medications I need in my plan's formulary next year?   How much can I expect to pay for my medications next year? If you are a current Medicare recipient, you should have receive your Annual Notice of Change from your Advantage plan or pharmaceutical plan…

Continue ReadingMedicare’s Annual Enrollment