All Posts By

Crystal Wipperfurth, CFP®, CRPC®

financial planning for incapacitation

Financial Planning for the Possibility of Incapacitation

By Blog
Planning for the possibility of becoming incapacitated can be daunting. While many may have their estate planning documents squared away and have end-of-life plans carefully laid out, they may not have planned adequately for the possibility of incapacitation. Incapacitation, or the physical or mental inability to make or communicate your decisions, often caused by illnesses like stroke or cognitive disease, is a real threat for retirees. Incapacitation presents a unique challenge, in that your family members, designated POAs (Powers of Attorney), doctors or lawyers will need to make decisions for you – and will need access to your documents and…
Read More
when to collect social security benefits

Weighing Your Options on When to Take Social Security

By Blog
Determining when to start collecting your Social Security benefit is an important financial decision that requires careful consideration of many factors. While many people don’t anticipate taking benefits before full retirement age, certain life events may force them to do so. A Transamerica Center for Retirement Research survey found that more than half of retirees (56 percent) retired sooner than they had planned. When can you take Social Security? “Full retirement age” as specified by the Social Security Agency (SSA) depends on your birth year. A table can be found here. While there’s no universally “correct” age to begin claiming…
Read More
POAs

Designating Powers of Attorney (POAs)

By Guides & Whitepapers
Selection, Documentation, and Communication Best Practices Most of our clients put Powers of Attorney or “POAs” in place as they age. POAs are legal documents that allow you to name an “agent” (also sometimes referred to as an “Attorney-in-fact”) to act on your behalf for financial or health care decisions, and are key components of any estate plan. We believe POAs are increasingly important beyond your estate plan too. Consider the following examples: Parents of college-aged adult children need healthcare POAs to interact with doctors and be involved with their children’s health care decisions. A business associate needs a non-durable…
Read More
account beneficiaries

Naming Account Beneficiaries

By and Guides & Whitepapers
Don’t Overlook this Important Planning Opportunity Before she passed away, Jade was diligent in making sure her will was in order, which left her entire estate to be equally divided between her two sons, Samuel and Benjamin. However, instead of naming them joint account beneficiaries on her brokerage and bank accounts, she named Samuel as sole beneficiary on her large brokerage account and Benjamin as sole beneficiary on her modest savings account. When Jade passed away, nearly all her assets passed to Samuel and Benjamin outside of her will according to her beneficiary designations. However, Samuel received much more than…
Read More

Often Overlooked Estate Planning Details

By Blog
Estate Planning is Still Important The recently passed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act raised the estate tax exemption to $11.2 million ($22.4 million for couples). While fewer families will now be subject to estate tax, estate planning, the process of preparing instructions for how your personal assets should be administered and distributed after your death, remains a necessary task. More than just the writing of a legal will, estate planning can provide legal clarity to final wishes, name beneficiaries of assets, and outline terms of care in the event of incapacitation. As the process of creating an estate plan can…
Read More

4 Ways to Instill Good Financial Habits in Your Kids

By Blog
Parents have arguably the most difficult job on the planet. Molding your children into high-functioning, independent beings takes more effort than simply teaching proper manners. The saying “actions speak louder than words” applies to some parenting duties – politeness, for example – but many valuable lessons must be presented to your kids through honest conversation. Unfortunately, financial conversations can often feel quite uncomfortable. In fact, 71% of parents have some degree of reluctance to discuss financial matters with their kids, but failure to have meaningful money conversations with them leaves them to learn from your actions alone, which are not…
Read More

Creating A Better Future: Gifting Strategies for Your Wealth

By Blog
Ensuring your money is passed on in the manner you desire is important for individuals who have amassed considerable assets during their lifetime. In addition to establishing a financial foundation for future generations, creating an informed plan to pass on your wealth can greatly reduce your overall income tax burden and save on estate taxes in the future. A financial advisor is prepared to walk you through the strategies that will maximize the continuity of your wealth while minimizing your tax burden. Here are a few strategies for passing on your wealth. Utilize Annual Exclusion Gifts to Transfer Smaller Amounts…
Read More
inherited IRA

What To Do If You Inherit an IRA

By Blog
Losing a loved one can bring not only an emotional burden but also significant financial responsibilities related to settling the estate. If you are a beneficiary to retirement plan assets, you may inherit control of all or part of a retirement plan account. So, what exactly can one do with an inherited Individual Retirement Account (IRA) or a Roth IRA? What responsibilities do you have to the newly inherited account? The answers to these questions may depend on your relationship to the deceased. Here I will discuss several factors that will determine what you can do with inherited retirement assets.…
Read More

What You Should Consider When Choosing a Financial Planner

By Blog
Asking for help when it comes to your financial decisions is never a bad choice. Whether it is something as simple as, “How much should I contribute to my 401k?” or as big as, “Can I retire next year?” we could all use some help along the way. Enlisting the services of a financial planner is a major decision, since this person may ultimately be managing your financial life, maximizing your wealth, planning for your retirement, and helping you work towards major goals. Because of that, your search process should involve several steps as it would when hiring any sort…
Read More

Get “SMART” with Your Personal Financial Goals

By Blog
So, you’ve finally graduated college and entered “the real world.” Maybe you have secured your first job, or are in a new city, and are feeling truly independent. Now that you have a professional income, you may think that you can spend money on whatever your heart desires. But have you taken a step back from all this newfound excitement to assess the state of your personal finances? For many young people, the answer is no. To take the next steps towards establishing a secure financial footing for yourself, first understand that personal finances are not to be left to…
Read More