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The Ten Things You Need to Know About Social Security

There are more than 2,700 rules that govern Social Security. A typical married couple has more than 500 possible ways in which to file for their Social Security Retirement Benefits.  If you are divorced or widowed, the filing rules can be even more complex.  Agents at the Social Security Administration (SSA) are prohibited from providing

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Withdrawing Before Age 59.5

What Happens If I Withdraw Money from My Tax-Deferred Investments Before Age 59½? Withdrawing funds from a tax-deferred retirement account before age 59½ generally triggers a 10% federal income tax penalty; all distributions are subject to ordinary income tax. However, there are certain situations in which you are allowed to make early withdrawals from a

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Tax Deferrals

What Is Tax Deferral? “Tax deferral” is a method of postponing the payment of income tax on currently earned investment income until the investor withdraws funds from the account. Tax deferral is encouraged by the government to stimulate long-term saving and investment, especially for retirement. Only investment vehicles designated as “tax deferred,” such as IRAs,

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Tax-Free Investments

Is There Such a Thing as a Tax-Free Investment? The simple answer to this question is “yes.” There are two main types: (1) municipal bonds and municipal bond mutual funds and (2) tax-free money market funds. Municipal bonds are issued by state and local governments in order to finance capital expenditures; typically, municipal bond funds

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Why Purchase Life Insurance

Why Purchase Life Insurance? We’ve all heard about the importance of having life insurance, but is it really necessary? Usually, the answer is “yes,” but it depends on your specific situation. If you have a family who relies on your income, then it is imperative to have life insurance protection. If you’re single and have

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Annuities as an Insurance Product

Why Are Annuities Considered an Insurance Product? Annuities are financial vehicles that can be sold only by insurance companies. Basically, an annuity is a contract between you and an insurance company, which promises to pay you a future income in exchange for the lump-sum payment or premiums that you pay. The payments specified in the

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Property and Casualty Insurance

What Is Property and Casualty Insurance? Property-casualty insurance practices in the United States are based on British practices and started with marine insurers located in major U.S. ports. Even when our nation was young, we were concerned with protecting ourselves and our property and not much has changed since then. Property-casualty insurance is specifically designed

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Business Owner Policies

Do I Need a Business-Owner Policy? Your business may be running smoothly. You could be making money hand over fist. But don’t be lulled into thinking that a catastrophe could never hit your business. Disasters can strike in many ways; even a minor one could wipe out a lifetime of hard work. Fortunately, the appropriate

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Life Insurance for Business Owners

Life Insurance for Business Owners If you own your own business, chances are you’ve at least thought about the conditions under which you will make your departure from the business and who is going to take over after you leave. Business continuation is difficult enough under normal circumstances, but if it has to take place

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Split-Dollar Life Insurance

Split-Dollar Life Insurance Life insurance can be an important part of a business owner’s financial strategy. It can also be a great benefit to offer to key employees. However, sometimes the cost can be prohibitive. With split-dollar life insurance, the cost of life insurance can be managed by splitting it up. To be clear, split-dollar

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