A big decision for everyone saving and planning for retirement (in addition to basic estate planning, of course) is how to best take advantage of tax-deferred plans. Too often, retirement plans are not handled properly, either on the financial end or on the legal end.
For example, who do have named as a beneficiary and contingent beneficiary of your retirement plan? Is it your children? Your revocable living trust? The right answer may be neither. Instead, a retirement plan trust may make the most sense to maximize tax deferment for your beneficiaries.
Unfortunately, as a Certified Elder Law Attorney Ed Slott Elite IRA Mastermind Member and Holistic Bucket Planning Advisor, we at The Elder Care Firm see advisors and attorneys mixing up things as simple as who to name as beneficiary of your retirement accounts.
As part of our holistic process–we assist clients with reviewing their retirement accounts, investments, how they are titled and look to the most tax efficient methods as possible to pass these complex assets to the next generation, while considering other income sources, such as Social Security.
As elder law attorneys we are frequently asked to assist our clients with estate, long-term care and investment planning. Unfortunately, we often find that our clients have been misled or have not been fully advised about investment products leading to significant mistakes in their investment planning. These mistakes jeopardize our clients’ future income, their ability to provide for their own support and to leave inheritances to their children.
Take advantage of the attorney client relationship to have your retirement plan reviewed by someone who is on the same side of the table as you and not looking to sell you on the latest stock or insurance product and is not beholden to a broker dealer. Someone who truly looking out for your best interests, versus someone who says they are a fiduciary.
Social Security is one of the many ways that people look to help fund their retirement. Mistiming when and how to take Social Security can cost your families thousands and tens of thousands of dollars. As one of the pillars of retirement income, Social Security should be intelligently thought about in terms of how and when to take Social Security. A knowledgeable estate planning lawyer can help assist with questions and timing of Social Security. One of the items that The Elder Care Firm can help with is with a Social Security Timing Report.
It is vitally important in retirement to have all of your ducks in a row as it relates to your estate planning documents. Things to consider include a trust, will, financial power of attorney, medical power of attorney, personal care plan and a deed. It is important that these be prepared by an estate planning or elder law attorney that focuses on this area of law. Documents by themselves are just worthless, you need to have a plan in place.
Many of our clients want to make sure their money lasts as long as they do. A cash flow analysis can be beneficial to get a better picture of cash inflows and outflows, including which investments to tap for that cash flow. The cash flow analysis can help determine if money is available for long-term care or how much money should be placed inside of an asset protection trust, like a Castle Trust.
Tax planning often takes on more importance in retirement, especially as you reach the age of required minimum distributions. Tax planning can help analyze the source of funds used to maintain lifestyle or pay for long-term care. The interplay between qualified accounts like IRA's and non-qualified accounts like brokerage accounts becomes paramount.
There are different types and different strategies available as it relates to life insurance. Your typical life insurance salesman will be more than happy to sell you life insurance, but it's more important to have a plan and strategy regarding the use of life insurance. For example, some forms of life insurance can provide tax-free income for college planning or retirement.
You've worked hard to build up funds in your retirement accounts like your 401ks and IRAs. Now is the time to consider plans to minimize the tax in retirement, protect them from long-term care costs and stretch them for the next generation. Through the use of trusts with retirement plan trust language inside of them, we can stretch them for the next generation.
The cost of long-term care is rising yearly. Current nursing home costs can run over $13,000 per month. A Certified Elder Law Attorney can help protect assets from the devastating cost of long-term care.
Now is the time to get organized and it starts with creating a one-page Asset Mind Map to understand what you have. With the Asset Mind Map, together we can map out a best interest plan for your retirement with the Trusted Counsel Advantage of being helped by an estate and elder law attorney.