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Social Security to stop mailing paper statements — again

January 10, 2017

The Social Security Administration announced it will stop mailing estimated benefit statements to most American workers in a cost-saving move that is expected to save about $11 million this year. Well, “announced” may be too strong a word....

Social Security changes coming to beneficiaries and taxpayers in 2017

January 5, 2017

Social Security benefits for about 60 million retired and disabled workers and their dependents will increase slightly in 2017, but for many beneficiaries, the minuscule 0.3% cost-of-living adjustment will be wiped out by higher Medicare premiums....

7 Social Security fixes to boost benefits

January 3, 2017

Sometimes a financial adviser engages a new client who has already begun collecting Social Security benefits. Or, perhaps an existing client files for Social Security without consulting the adviser about how it will impact the overall retirement...

Social Security program to run out of money in calendar year 2029: CBO report

December 22, 2016

The Social Security program will run out of money in calendar year 2029 and will not be able to pay full benefits after that, according to updated projections published Wednesday by the Congressional Budget Office. The program consists of two...

Calculating the impact of new Social Security rules

December 21, 2016

Looking back on the Social Security rules changes that took effect in 2016, some financial advisers may think that it is no longer worth their time to focus on claiming strategies to boost their clients' retirement income. But rather than playing...

10 top Social Security stories of 2016

December 16, 2016

2016 was a big year for Social Security news, following Congress’ vote to eliminate some key Social Security claiming strategies. Here are the Social Security stories in InvestmentNews that gained the most attention from readers this year,...

Social Security Administration evaluates online claiming tools

December 13, 2016

When to claim Social Security retirement benefits is one of the most important financial decisions an individual can make. Although the majority of retirees would like guidance from the Social Security Administration (SSA) on the best time to...

Time for a new Social Security Commission

December 8, 2016

Based on the recent presidential campaign that was virtually devoid of public policy discussions, you would never know that the nation's bedrock retirement program — Social Security — will become insolvent in about 18 years when today's...

Seniors see Social Security changes as benefit cuts

November 23, 2016

Lawmakers who voted last year to do away with two key Social Security claiming strategies labeled their legislative action a “closure of unintended loopholes.” But a majority of senior voters disagree with that description. In a new poll...

Why Social Security is crucial to women

November 21, 2016

Financial advisers looking to expand their roster of female clients would be wise to brush up on Social Security claiming rules. With women's longer life expectancies and the fact that they are more likely to live alone in old age due to widowhood...

New Social Security rules and divorce

November 15, 2016

Social Security benefits for divorced spouses remains one of the few fertile areas where strategic claiming strategies can make a big difference in retirement income planning — depending on the ex-spouses' ages. I encountered many questions...

Adviser's Consultant: Adding value with tax services

November 10, 2016

Staying competitive in the financial advice market requires professionals to provide a breadth of services beyond investments, and tax guidance is a natural fit, according to Michael Goodman, founder and president of Wealthstream Advisors. He...

Gradually converting a traditional IRA to a Roth can boost nest egg

November 10, 2016

The first wave of baby boomers who turned 70 ½ this year must start tapping their traditional retirement accounts soon and pay taxes on those required minimum distributions. For those first boomers who turn 70 ½ this year, who were born from...

Where will Medicare costs go in 2017?

November 7, 2016

People are asking me where Medicare costs, specifically Part B premiums and Part B and D high-income surcharges, are going in 2017. While the final numbers have not yet been released, we know that Medicare costs have been going up dramatically....

Advisers still baffled by key rule changes to Social Security claiming strategies

November 2, 2016

One year after the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 was signed into law on Nov. 2, financial advisers continue to be baffled by how to help their clients maximize their Social Security benefits under the new claiming rules. I get it. The new rules...

Big gap between Social Security cost-of-living adjustment and retiree inflation

October 24, 2016

One of the great values of Social Security benefits is that they are supposed to increase each year to keep pace with inflation and protect seniors' buying power. Unfortunately, that's not the way it has worked out in recent years. The rising...

Divorce might be the worst financial plan of all

October 19, 2016

Divorce can crush just about any retirement savings strategy. And women generally suffer more than men. The later a woman divorces, the more likely she is to be working late in life. The road to real riches often begins in Congress, where the...

Coordinating Social Security disability and retirement benefits

October 17, 2016

Financial advisers are often well-versed in optimal Social Security claiming strategies for married couples when it comes to deciding when and how each should claim retirement benefits. But adding disability benefits into the mix seems to wreak...

Social Security cost-of-living adjustment expected to be lowest ever

October 11, 2016

Advisers, get your aspirin ready. When the Social Security cost-of-living-adjustment for 2017 is officially announced next week, it is expected to be 0.3% — the lowest annual increase on record. After no annual cost of living adjustment this...

Most women claim Social Security early

October 6, 2016

Women tend to live longer than men, which means they spend more time in retirement and often do so with less savings. As a result, women retirees, on average, could spend 70% of their Social Security benefits on health care costs. Women count...

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