Entries by Brian Dobbis

    Five Steps Toward a Smarter Retirement

    May 19, 2016 4:25 PM by Brian Dobbis

    In case you missed it, here’s a handy summary of our most popular blogs among readers. 

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS 

    Of all the conundrums facing financial advisors, none compare with clients’ worries about retirement. After all, many clients have not saved enough for their golden years, and there’s a growing need for income, owing to longer lifespans, low interest rates, rising health costs, and inadequate support from Social Security and pension plans (if your clients even have one.)

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    How Spousal IRAs Can Build Nest Eggs

    May 13, 2016 11:46 AM by Brian Dobbis

    Often overlooked by couples caring for children and/or elderly parents, spousal IRAs can be a valuable tool to save for retirement.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS 

    A common misconception I often hear is that you must have taxable compensation to fund an IRA, as though not having earned income meant that you were out of luck either beginning or further building a nest egg. This is a very costly myth.

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    State-Run Retirement Plans: Ready for Prime Time?

    May 9, 2016 3:15 PM by Brian Dobbis

    While industry critics worry about the practical aspects, state-run retirement plans for private-sector workers have gained momentum. Whether the details bedevil them is another matter.  

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS 

    Now that the Department of Labor (DOL) has issued its final version of the “conflict of interest” rule, we can turn our collective attention to another important happening that is presently taking place in the retirement world, one in which the DOL again finds itself spearheading efforts to expand access to retirement plans to private-sector workers.

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    IRA Alert: Remember Those RMD Rules

    April 28, 2016 1:41 PM by Brian Dobbis

    With so much confusion about required minimum distributions from IRAs, here are some key points on how and when people age 70 1/2 and older must begin their withdrawal.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS 

    "Spend it—or else." That essentially is Uncle Sam’s warning—and the rules are clear: Investors must take required minimum distributions (RMD) from all their IRAs, including SEP and SIMPLE, but not Roth, after reaching age 70½.

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    How to Correct IRA Mistakes

    April 22, 2016 9:47 AM by Brian Dobbis

    The good news: there’s a road map. The bad news: it generally leads to a penalty.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS 

    The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is probably the last place you’d look for motivational quotes about coping with mistakes.

    Mistakes may be steps up the proverbial ladder. They may be how you learn. They may be forgivable. But the operative view at the IRS is the simple adage that mistakes happen and you had better own up to them.

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    Last-Minute Tax Tip: Mind Your IRA Contributions on Form 5498

    April 15, 2016 3:48 PM by Brian Dobbis

    You don’t have to send this form to the IRS because they get a copy as well. But be sure to review it for errors and file with your records.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS 

    Building a retirement nest egg takes a concerted effort, especially when it comes to the assortment of government paperwork for IRA compliance. Several weeks ago, we covered the often overlooked Form 8606, which reports nondeductible contributions. Now it’s time to explain Form 5498, which is all about reporting IRA contributions, including SEP and SIMPLE accounts.

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    Tax Season: Seize the IRA Day

    April 8, 2016 3:45 PM by Brian Dobbis

    With this year’s tax deadline pushed to April 18, now is the time for advisors to focus on opportunities to capture both 2015 and 2016 IRA contributions.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS 

    As IRA season winds down, investors and advisors alike may want to refer to the following compendium, which includes pointers on both IRA limits and business-building ideas. Remember that nearly anyone with a reportable earned income is eligible to fund an IRA. Earned income is the sole requirement. Also remember that through April 18, 2016, investors can still fund IRAs for 2016.

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    Using IRAs for College

    April 1, 2016 12:45 PM by Brian Dobbis

    With college costs reaching all-time highs, the IRS now allows IRA owners under age 59½ to tap their accounts for higher education expenses without penalty.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS

    Of all the material challenges facing American families these days, saving for retirement while at the same time helping their children pay for college must rank fairly high. Imagine, for example, the number of pre-retirees with two or more children in college.

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    March Madness in the IRA World

    March 28, 2016 11:00 AM by Brian Dobbis

    With retirement savings still playing catch-up, opportunities to grab a piece of the $7.6 trillion IRA market should be a slam dunk for advisors. A recent webinar scored from all over.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS

    College basketball games may garner a lot of attention this time of year, but that didn’t prevent more than 1,500 financial advisors from tuning into my recent webcast designed to help them grow their IRA business.  After all, many eligible individuals still haven’t jumped on the chance to build tax-advantaged nest eggs, and the rollover market alone is expected to rise, from $350 billion in 2014 to an estimated $500 billion in 2019, according to Cerulli Associates.

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    Be Sure to Report Aftertax IRA Contributions to the IRS

    March 18, 2016 9:38 AM by Brian Dobbis

    Don’t forget IRS Form 8606! Besides being the most talked about, least understood form regarding IRA reporting, it could save you from being taxed twice on your retirement savings.

    THE ROAD TO RETIREMENT with BRIAN DOBBIS

    ’Tis the season to make IRA contributions. But some clients, in their haste to use such tax-advantaged savings vehicle before deadline, may forget to tell Uncle Sam about aftertax contributions.

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