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The Slott Report

Social Security and The Election: Jeffrey Levine on Wall Street Journal Podcast

Ed Slott and Company Chief Retirement Strategist Jeffrey Levine sat down with The Wall Street Journal's Veronica Dagher to discuss how the presidential candidates - Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump and Gary Johnson - want to handle Social Security and other retirement planning issues.

What Now? A Widow's Story About Making the Right Financial Decisions

In 2006, Alan, a strapping young man who had just turned 50, collapsed and died of a massive heart attack while attending Sunday morning Mass with his wife Karen. Alan and Karen co-owned a business. Alan was a contractor and Karen handled the accounting and billing. Karen was fairly savvy financially. However, because she felt she had to get everything settled “right away” after Alan’s passing, she made several costly mistakes. It's a story you and your clients can learn from.

Excess IRA Contributions - Too Much of a Good Thing

You can have too much of a good thing. A contribution to your IRA is a great way to save for retirement, but there are limits. If you exceed those limits you will end up with an excess IRA contribution and a tax mess. This was the fate of two taxpayers in a recent court case, where mega IRA contributions resulted in excess contributions and penalties.

Too Many Roth IRAs? It's Time to Consolidate

A common strategy is to go through with smaller Roth IRA conversions or to convert different assets to different Roth IRAs. If you have done this over a number of years, you probably have more Roth IRAs than you know what to do with. Maybe it is time to consolidate. Here's why.

Defining "Children" For Estate Planning Purposes Is More Complicated Than You Might Think

"I leave the remainder of my assets to my children." Of all the provisions that may be found within your will or trust, this would seem to be one of the more straightforward of such items... right? Well, you might think so, but that’s not always the case.

Widows Can Now Take Control of RMDs When Spouse Passes Away

According to the US Census Bureau, approximately 800,000 people are widowed each year in the United States, and “nearly 700,000 of them are women who lose their husbands.” One of the greatest economic challenges for a large portion of widows in America is higher income taxes when their spouse passes away. Don Rasmussen, member of Ed Slott's Elite IRA Advisor Group, outlines how widows can take control of required minimum distributions when their spouse passes away ... lowering their tax bill.

Department of Labor Clears Way for State-Run IRAs

Your state may soon be getting into the IRA business. The Department of Labor (DOL) removed a major hurdle recently, when it issued final rules for state-run IRA programs. The final rules give states a safe harbor from Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) for state-run IRAs if certain conditions are met.

Is My Company Stock Appreciated? I Want to Utilize NUA

This week's Slott Report Mailbag follows up on Jeffrey Levine's capital gains tax strategy using a free step-up in basis and answers a question on net unrealized appreciation (NUA) benefits.

What TransAmerica Retirement Survey Says About Retirement Outlook

Last month TransAmerica released its 17th annual Retirement Survey of Workers. This year’s study, entitled Prospectives on Retirement: Baby Boomers, Generation X, Millennials, yielded some incredible information. Here are some of the most fascinating takeaways I found as I read through the study.

Planning With a Special Needs Child Must Span Two Generations

Even though it was 25 years ago, it seems like yesterday that my wife and I had our son evaluated by a pediatric specialist who told us our son would never live independently. When our child was diagnosed with a special need, our initial focus was on learning about the disability (autism), finding therapists and researching educational rights. Preparing for our child’s financial future (and even your own) was not an initial priority. The reality is that when there is a disabled child, the family financial plan has to span two generations rather than one. The following plan needs to take into account the potential for government benefits and, with any comprehensive plan, has to address how to minimize taxes.

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