1. Social Security: It’s more than a monthly check. As you approach retirement, you are likely to face a host of decisions that could significantly impact your financial future. One of the critical decisions you’ll make is filing for your Social Security benefits, a choice that plays an important role in your broader retirement income plan. Social Security is designed to provide older Americans and disabled persons with a portion of the financial support needed to cover essential retirement expenses. The program offers many benefits, such as:
    – Lifetime retirement income
    – Payments indexed for inflation
    – Certain spousal and survivor benefits
    – Preferential tax treatment

    With benefits like these it’s easy to see why Social Security is so important to a financial plan for retirement. Making sound decisions about Social Security benefits is critical for ensuring your financial security in retirement. It also requires a greater understanding of how Social Security income fits into your overall retirement plan.

  2. Are you thinking about retiring and do you have enough money for market declines? The S&P is down about 19% in 2022, the largest decline in over ten years. Retirees are especially vulnerable to market volatility risk. An inopportune market correction can setback your retirement savings. It is important to mitigate market risk by principal protection combined with guaranteed income especially for your essential lifestyle income.
  3. We are often asked the question what is a fixed index annuity? A is a contract between you and an insurance company that provides a series of immediate or deferred payments that can be used for retirement income in exchange for a single or recurring payment, also known as a premium. The benefits of these insurance products include principal protection with the potential of growth based on an external index, such as the S&P 500® Index, which can be used to help reach retirement income goals after the accumulation period has ended and the payout phase begins. Interest earned is also protected from loss due to index fluctuations, leaving your retirement dollars intact for the future since the interest can never be lost once it is credited to the annuity contract. They are an excellent tool for handling your essential lifestyle income!
  4. There are several changes in coverage for 2023.
    – The Part B Premium has been slightly reduced for most Americans
    – A lower deductible for Part B
    – A $35 cap on monthly insulin expenses
    – In 2023, a two-shot vaccine for shingles will also be covered with no out-of-pocket cost.
    – An 8.7% cost of living increase starting in January 2023
  5. Rollovers from 529 plans to Roth IRAs: A 529 Plan is an investment account that offers tax benefits when used to pay for qualified education expenses for a designated beneficiary. You can use a 529 plan to pay for college, K-12 tuition, apprenticeship programs, and even student loan repayments.

    A big change in the new tax laws affecting rollovers from 529 plans to Roth IRA’s. In response to concerns that unused funds could be trapped in a 529 plan, Congress is allowing 529 plan funds to be rolled over to Roth IRAs. The limit is $35,000 and the 529 plan must be open for more than 15 years. This becomes effective in 2024.

Recommendation: Secure an advisor, understand these concepts, and let him or her guide you to a worry free and successful retirement!

First Benefits Group Inc is neither a legal nor accounting firm, and does not render legal, accounting, or tax advice.

You should contact an attorney or CPA if you wish to receive legal, accounting, or tax advice.

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