The Benefits of Long-Term Care Insurance

Presented by Advanced Financial Concepts

As the average population of the United States ages, more individuals will require some form of long-term health care. In fact, some studies suggest that up to 70 percent of Americans will require some form of long-term care during their lives. As its name implies, long-term care insurance covers costs associated with long-term medical care, including at-home care as well as stays in assisted living facilities, nursing facilities, or rehabilitation centers.

Although individuals typically consider purchasing long-term care insurance as they get older, purchasing coverage earlier in life can be advantageous. Purchasing long-term care coverage when younger can offer lower premiums while affording additional coverage in case an accident or unexpected injury strikes that requires costly, extended medical care.

Additionally, although Medicare currently covers long-term care for senior citizens in the U.S., regulations require that an individual’s assets be exhausted prior to Medicare coverage beginning. Thus, long-term care coverage may be a wise choice to avoid medical costs decimating an estate.

About Advanced Financial Concepts: Offering a wide range of financial planning services, Justin F. Shaw and his Houston firm, Advanced Financial Concepts, assist clients with matters such as insurance, tax advice, and estate planning.

Why Is Business Owner Insurance a Good Idea? Presented by Advanced Financial Concepts

Business owners face a host of potential pitfalls, from property loss and damage to personal liability associated with accidents. While separate, individual policies can cover each of these potential incidents, an umbrella insurance plan for business owners covers a combination of these occurrences, providing a more efficient, cost-effective way for a business owner to protect his or her investment.

Another advantage of a business owner insurance policy is its flexibility. An owner can discuss the business’ unique needs and circumstances with an agent and craft a plan that contains only the coverage necessary. However, it’s often advisable for a business owner to contact an insurance underwriter for an evaluation of the business to be certain that the owner doesn’t unintentionally neglect necessary coverage. If properly planned, a business owner policy is a wise financial strategy.

About Advanced Financial Concepts: Owned and operated in Houston by Justin F. Shaw, Advanced Financial Concepts offers financial advice and service to individuals, families, and business owners.

Financial Planning for New College Graduates By Justin F. Shaw, CEO of Advanced Financial Concepts

Despite living through a tight economy, students preparing now to graduate from college should not despair regarding their financial future. Instead, they should use the current economy as inspiration to create a solid financial plan for the future and plant the seeds of a more secure retirement.

In addition to finding employment, developing a plan to pay back student loans should be a first priority for new graduates. Whether the repayment plan lasts 10 years or 30 years, students should take steps to start paying early and keep paying their loans back.

Second, new graduates should develop a routine of tracking their spending habits and limiting their consumption. Keeping credit card spending to a minimum and staying current is also a crucial practice to learn at this age.

Third, new graduates should start saving. Even if they start with only a minimal amount, learning to set aside money for savings and investments sets the tone for a lifetime of sound financial practice.

Finally, turning dreams into concrete goals will help new graduates move into their future. Rather than thinking about becoming wealthy, graduates should establish solid goals for income savings that can be measured and updated as their career progresses.

About Advanced Financial Concepts:

Based in Houston, Texas, Advanced Financial Concepts is led by Justin F. Shaw, CFS, RFC, and is backed by a team of highly trained financial advisers.

Advanced Financial Concepts: Tax-deferred Retirement Planning

Guided by Justin F. Shaw, Houston-based Advanced Financial Concepts (AFC) provides clients with wealth management solutions that emphasize steady retirement incomes and minimal expenses. Taxes are a key concern for many in planning for retirement, particularly those with employer-sponsored retirement funds such as IRAs.

The majority of IRA plans function on a tax-deferred basis, with taxes postponed until after retirement. When distributions are taken on retirement accounts (typically after age 59½) they are thus viewed by the IRS as taxable income. In cases where funds are withdrawn early, a 10 percent IRS penalty is applicable, making it sensible to leave retirement funds intact until retirement. Some employees choose to make nondeductible contributions into IRA accounts and these are calculated on a “cost basis.” The end result is that this portion of IRA funds is not considered taxable when later withdrawn.

Justin F. Shaw and the Advanced Financial Concepts team stress that, after age 70½, traditional IRAs and Roth 403(b) and 401(k) plans are subject to required annual minimum distributions.

Withdrawing Money Early from Tax-Deferred Investments: An Interview with Advanced Financial Concepts (Part 2 of 2)

In the first part of our interview with Justin F. Shaw of Houston-based Advanced Financial Concepts, we discussed the retirement accounts to which the IRS applies tax penalties and the existence of circumstances in which those penalties do not apply. In the second half of the interview, our source went a little further into what those circumstances are:

Q: So it is possible to take an early distribution from an IRA without paying a penalty?

A: Only in certain situations. For instance, if an IRA owner dies, his or her beneficiaries can take distributions without penalties. Part of the purchase of a first home and some medical expenses can also be paid for from IRAs without penalties.

Q: And how about from employer-sponsored retirement plans?

A: Many of the same conditions apply, but investors in employer-sponsored plans can also sometimes take penalty-free distributions if they no longer work for the employer, received excess contributions, or made excess elective deferrals.

That wraps up our interview. As always, talk to a qualified financial professional before making any investment decisions.