(518) 802-0004

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(518) 802-0004

Social Security

As a retiree or pre-retiree, you likely have a lot of questions about Social Security and Retirement. You are not alone. Nearly 10,000 people reach age 65 every day and face the same retirement concerns you have. While every individual’s situation is unique, with specific challenges, you all have the same goal: to secure financial independence in retirement.

This has become more difficult and complex since the days your parents or grandparents retired. Life expectancies are longer, meaning that retirement income needs to last longer. Inflation can inhibit the ability of your retirement nest egg to sustain you when finally quit working for income. Taxes and market volatility can greatly affect assets and retirement portfolios. And finally, Social Security is subject to many changes and guidelines.

While you shouldn’t solely rely on Social Security benefits, it is important to see them as an important retirement asset within your total financial plan. As such, your individual Social Security benefits can be structured to maximize your retirement goals. But because Social Security decisions are often difficult to undo and rules are often complex, your best option is to work with a financial advisor that can account your whole picture, whatever retirement assets—401(k)s, savings, or IRAs—you may have, plus your ideal retirement lifestyle.

Questions E &O Financial, LLC can help you answer:

  • How are benefits calculated and at when age can I claim them?
  • How can I maximize my benefits?
  • What are the pro and cons of waiting until full retirement age (66) or older to claim?
  • How do COLA’s, divorced spouse benefits, and survivor benefits work?
  • Can I work and still claim benefits? How might this impact my benefit amounts? Will working while on claim affect my benefit amount?

Medicare

With many years of experience serving pre-retirees and retirees, we can help you understand and use your Medicare benefits.

With many years of experience serving pre-retirees and retirees, we can help you understand and use your Medicare benefits.

MEDICARE BASICS:

Parts of Medicare

• Part A – Hospital Insurance (such as Hospital Care, Skilled Nursing Facility Care, Nursing Home Care, and Hospice)

• Part B – Medical Insurance (Medically Necessary Services and Preventive Services)

• Part C – Medicare Advantage Plans (Medicare Benefits offered by private organizations)

• Part D – Prescription Drug Plans

Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B are often referred together as Traditional Medicare

Initial Enrollment Period

A beneficiary’s Initial Enrollment Period (IEP) begins 3-months before turning age 65, the month they turn 65s, and the three months after, for a total of seven months.

Waiting until the month an individual turns 65 may cause a delay in Part B (Medical Insurance) coverage.

Not signing up for Part B coverage when first eligible may cause a beneficiary to face a late-enrollment penalty for when Part B coverage is claimed.

Open Enrollment Period

Oct. 15th – Dec. 7th

During the Open Enrollment Period (OEP), all Medicare beneficiaries can change their Medicare health plans and prescription drug coverage.

Medigap OEP

For most beneficiaries, Medigap OEP lasts from the first day of the month they turn 65 or older and enroll in Part B, lasting six months.

Medicare Supplement

Medicare may not cover all necessary services and incur high out-of-pocket expenses. This is why many consumers seek out supplemental Medicare policies called Medigaps.

Medigaps are offered in all states and are intended to give coverage for services that traditional Medicare Part A & Part B does not (hence the name “Medigap”). This includes non-covered items and services, as well certain out-of-pocket expenses, depending on the particular Medigap policy. While all Medigaps are required to provide the same basic benefits, there may be variations on a policy-to-policy comparison.

Medigaps involve enrollment timeframes that make obtaining or switching a policy outside of the Medigap Open Enrollment Period difficult, unless a beneficiary satisfies certain circumstances. This means that most beneficiaries will have one chance to get the right supplemental Medicare policy for them. In short, if you are Medicare eligible, a Medigap can be a great way to enhance your traditional coverage, but it will take research and consultation to find the best Medigap policy for you.

Here at E&O Financial, we have worked with many individuals to explore their best-fitting Medigap options. If you are currently enrolled in a Medigap that you are not happy with, we can walk you through the difficult process of switching to another policy.

Estate Planning

Estate planning is the process of structuring your assets to provide maximum efficiency when transferring to heirs at minimum expense and effort. Without a properly shaped estate plan, your financial wishes may not be fulfilled and your recipients may be needlessly burdened—both financially and emotionally.

Although the basics of estate planning are sometimes as easy as designating beneficiaries on documents, the actual mechanics of transferring wealth to the next generation may be very complicated.

Why is Estate Planning Important?

It may seem that estate planning is only a concern for the wealthiest of the wealthy. While the majority of estates won’t face the current estate tax rate, individuals still need to think about the effect taxation can have on their assets as is it passes to beneficiaries. This is because received assets will generally face ordinary income tax, which can reduce significant amounts away from the accumulated value.

Certainly, different asset types will be taxed differently, but someone’s life wealth can be reduced—in some cases by nearly half—through ordinary income taxes. This gets more involved when the asset is not monetary, but rather physical, such as property, land, or homes.

Fortunately, there are numerous strategies and solutions that can minimize the tax burden your heirs may face. This can involve things like annuities, trusts, and life insurance policies, structured to ensure that beneficiaries receive the maximum possible. To properly establish an estate plan that works in concert with your specific retirement plan, assets, and legacy goals, you should seek out as a financial advisor that provides an expert hand.

Every estate plan is unique and should be designed to reflect the needs and goals of the individual or couple. At E & O Financial, we assist and support you in this process. Don’t put off estate planning until it’s too late. Contact us today at (518) 802-0004

Final Expense

While there are many insurance solutions that help accumulate cash value and provide accessible living benefits, the baseline coverage many need is help with final expenses. What are final expenses? These include items associated with your death such as:

• Burial Costs

• Casket

• Embalming

• Funeral Expenses

Final Expense Insurance is designed to provide coverage for these costs. Final Expense Insurance is generally offered in two classes: Guaranteed Issue and Simplified Issue.

Guaranteed Issue does not involve any medical exams or questions, making it a great option for those in poor health. Premiums may be higher when compared to other forms of life insurance; however guaranteed issue allows an individual who might otherwise not be able to obtain a life insurance policy to gain peace of mind.

Simplified Issue, like Guaranteed Issue, does not involve any medical exams. However, questions regarding health conditions will be asked during the application process.

Although Final Expense coverage is, on the face of it, simpler than other types of insurance, determining what is right for you requires careful consideration. Knowing your best options and how much coverage you need can be hard to figure out. E&O Financial, LLC is to help you through all of your Final Expense Insurance questions.