Tax-smart strategies for gifts to charity

By Martin Schamis
Posted on November 12, 2021

While each of us has our own very personal motivations for, and approach to, giving, Americans as a group continue to be the world’s most charitable nation. In 2020 alone, annual charitable gifting in the United States totaled over $471 billion (with gifts by individuals comprising 69% of that total). And even though income and estate tax advantages aren’t the main reasons driving... READ MORE

Buying insurance to fill Medicare’s gaps

By Jackie Stewart and Kimberly Lankford
Posted on November 11, 2021

Each year, older adults have important decisions to make regarding their Medicare coverage. Original Medicare provides a number of great benefits to enrollees, but this coverage does have some gaps. For instance, Part B will cover only 80% of your medical expenses after you hit the deductible, with no out-of-pocket maximum. That means you could be on the hook for a significant bill if... READ MORE

Meet Virtual Expo’s Social Security expert 

By Margaret Foster
Posted on November 02, 2021

Economist Mark J. Warshawsky, a keynote speaker at this year’s Virtual 50+Expo, has been focused on the coming insolvency of Social Security for most of his career. “Changes are needed. It’s an old-fashioned program,” said Warshawsky, senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C. “Action needed to be taken years ago, but our system is pretty... READ MORE

Now is your chance for Medicare changes

By David Olsen
Posted on November 01, 2021

Despite what you might think — based on the year-round onslaught of Medicare commercials and the flyers arriving in the mail — you can’t just make changes to your Medicare coverage any time you want. Most people who want to make adjustments must wait for the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period (AEP), which runs from Oct. 15 to Dec. 7 each year. That’s when you can do things... READ MORE

What to do should a financial crisis arise

By Elliot Raphaelson
Posted on October 28, 2021

As the economy struggles to regain its footing after the pandemic recession, many Americans are facing serious financial problems. If you are one of them, I recommend an excellent new book by Washington Post personal finance columnist Michelle Singletary. It is very easy for individuals facing financial problems to make poor decisions. For such people, What to Do with Your Money When... READ MORE

The smarter way to pay estimated taxes

By Rocky Mengle and Kevin McCormally
Posted on October 26, 2021

If you’re still working, you probably don’t need to worry about estimated tax payments. Withholding on your paychecks should ensure compliance with the tax system’s pay-as-you-earn demands. But if you’re retired, chances are you need to make estimated payments. You’re basically supposed to figure how much tax you’ll owe for the current year and send it along to the IRS in... READ MORE

Replace funeral with a celebration of life

By Mark Theil
Posted on October 21, 2021

Some older adults tell their families, “I don’t want a funeral; I want to have a party.” Others request no funeral or party at all. But some families feel that doing nothing isn’t quite right. In any of these circumstances, a funeral celebrant can help create a “celebration of life” tribute ceremony that can be a beautiful, healing experience for everyone who... READ MORE

Volunteer options you may not know of

By Janet Bodnar
Posted on October 14, 2021

My earlier column on fulfilling ways to spend retirement continues to generate inspirational responses from readers, many of whom have sung the praises of volunteering. You also named service groups that you have found rewarding. I’ll cite a number of them for those of you in search of a cause that strikes a chord. Many of your efforts focus on children. After working for more than... READ MORE

Should you stay in the stock market?

By Elliot Raphaelson
Posted on October 08, 2021

Many readers have written recently asking if they should be reducing their allocation to the stock market because of the excellent performance over the last few years. I have always recommended re-balancing your portfolio once a year. I do re-balance myself, sometimes more than once a year. Stock markets rarely go up continuously, so it does pay to be prudent and not become too... READ MORE

Why (and how) to buy umbrella insurance

By Kiplinger Washington Editors
Posted on September 29, 2021

An umbrella insurance policy typically covers the same things as your home and auto policies, plus a few more — including lawsuits that arise when you’re driving abroad or operating rented watercraft, or from alleged libel, slander or defamation of character. Umbrella coverage picks up where the liability limits of your homeowners and auto policies leave off. It’s usually sold in... READ MORE