Don’t Forget Upcoming ERISA-Filing Deadline

    July 14, 2017 2:20 PM by Brian Dobbis

    Qualified retirement plans on a calendar year must file Form 5500 by July 31, unless an extension is requested. Beware of late-filing penalties.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS 

    Every year, qualified retirement plans subject to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) must navigate through countless filing deadlines—and Form 5500, “Series Annual Return/Report of Employee Benefit Plan,” is no exception.  

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    Putting Precious Metals in an IRA

    July 7, 2017 4:40 PM by Brian Dobbis

    More investors have taken a shine to investing in gold and silver in their retirement accounts. But there are a number of potential drawbacks to be aware of.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS 

    During the July 4th weekend, I received an e-mail promoting the purported benefits of investing in precious metals, such as gold and silver. Ads promoting investing in precious metals are fairly common—but this one touted their potential role in an IRA. Without much fanfare, precious metals have become more common investments in tax-advantaged accounts during the last decade. However, this type of investing is not for all investors.

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    IRAs: More FAQs about RMDs

    June 23, 2017 11:55 AM by Brian Dobbis

    Insights on estates as beneficiaries, how RMDs are calculated after annuitization, and minimum Roth 401(k) distributions

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS

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    The more I meet with financial advisors, the more I’m asked about required minimum distributions (RMDs) from IRAs. As I’ve explained in prior blogs, RMDs are a highly specialized area of retirement planning, and due care should be taken to familiarize oneself with the maze of rules that apply. The consequences for missing an RMD are severe: a 50% penalty surtax assessed on the amount of the RMD that should have been taken. So with that penalty in mind, here are some recurring questions and answers you might want to file for future reference.

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    ERISA Fidelity Bond versus Fiduciary Liability Insurance: What’s the Difference?

    June 15, 2017 4:40 PM by Brian Dobbis

    Plan sponsors often confuse the bond with insurance that is designed to protect them from personal liability.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS 

    With so much attention to fiduciary responsibility in the past year—not to mention increased litigation and tighter regulation—plan sponsors have every reason to explore their insurance options. But there tends to be a lot of confusion, misperception, and misconception about the right course of action.

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    Retirement: Update on State-Run IRAs

    June 8, 2017 4:10 PM by Brian Dobbis

    Programs that already have been established could face stiff headwinds from Washington.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS 

    With thousands of baby boomers turning 65 every day, insufficient savings rates among all Americans, and doubts about the future sustainability of Social Security, much has been written about an approaching “retirement crisis.” We think, in terms of clarity, that additional perspective is in order.

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    The Looming Retirement Plan Coverage Gap

    June 2, 2017 4:05 PM by Brian Dobbis

    Can multiple employer plans help more Americans save for their golden years?

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS 

    According to AARP (formerly, the American Association of Retired Persons), there are roughly 55 million private sector workers in the United States without access to an employer-sponsored retirement plan. Americans accumulate the vast majority of their retirement funds through employer-sponsored defined contribution (DC) plans, which currently comprise $7 trillion in assets, with the most well-known and popular being 401(k)s ($4.8 trillion).

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    IRA Tax Tip: Form 5498 Coming Soon

    May 18, 2017 2:15 PM by Brian Dobbis

    Don’t be alarmed. You didn’t do anything wrong. It’s purely informational.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS  

    Tax season is in the rearview mirror, but if you own an IRA, you most likely will receive one more tax-related document sometime in the next couple weeks: IRS Form 5498, which is an IRA activity statement.

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    Taxes on Retirement Plan Distributions Could Rise Significantly

    May 12, 2017 9:30 AM by Brian Dobbis

    Both the Trump and House proposals would apply ordinary income tax rates.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS

    In last week’s column, I discussed the potential impact comprehensive tax reform would have on retirement accounts. This week, I will drill down on a specific proposal that’s included in the Trump administration’s plan and the “Better Way” Tax Reform Blueprint released in July 2016 by the House Republican leadership, because it could have a material and lasting impact on most small-businesses’ incentive to establish or maintain an employer-sponsored retirement plan.

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    Will Retirement Savers Lose Some Tax Advantages Under Tax Reform?

    May 8, 2017 11:15 AM by Brian Dobbis

    Defined contribution (DC) plans and IRAs may not be sacrosanct.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS 

    In my 20-plus years in the retirement industry, I can’t recall a time when plan participants, plan sponsors, advisors, and practitioners have had to prepare and digest so many breaking developments simultaneously, including: the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule; state-run auto IRA plans; increased litigation; health savings accounts; and the (potential) impact of tax reform on retirement accounts. Then there’s the onslaught of headlines, such as you’re not saving enough, or are you’re saving too much; rollover decisions; Social Security solvency; Roth versus pretax deferrals; Roth conversions; passive versus active investing; target-date funds—and more!

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    What Happens to Your HSA When You Die?

    April 26, 2017 11:00 AM by Brian Dobbis

    Depending on whom is the named beneficiary, the tax result may greatly differ.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS 

    Naming a beneficiary for your retirement account is one of the most important administrative tasks an investor is compelled to complete. This routine paperwork also applies to tax-advantaged health savings accounts (HSAs). 

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