• By Sarah Brenner, JD Director of Retirement Education President Biden has declared September to be National Preparedness Month. The goal is to encourage Americans to be more prepared for natural disasters. Unfortunately, from flooding on the east coast to fires on the west coast the news headlines seem to be full of these devastating events, and an increasing number of Americans have been [...]

    Read more

    By Sarah Brenner, JD Director of Retirement Education Question: Ed I heard on a podcast that you are the number one authority on IRAs, so I want to go to the most informative source.  Could you answer this question for me? I have a Roth IRA and suddenly I was unable to view and edit my beneficiaries. I was told by the custodian that it was because the account was moved from a [...]

    Read more

    By Ian Berger, JD IRA Analyst What if you have an IRA with your spouse as primary beneficiary, get divorced without changing your beneficiary and then die? Who inherits your IRA benefits. If you live in one of the 26 states (as of June 2018) that have “revocation-on-divorce” (ROD) laws, your ex-spouse would automatically be removed as beneficiary upon divorce. Instead, your IRA would go[...]

    Read more

    By Andy Ives, CFP®, AIF® IRA Analyst Question: I appreciate all of the information you pass along, both through PBS and now through the American College. In one of your recent presentations, you discussed QCDs and their often-overlooked value. I recommend QCDs to “eligible” clients. Since the adoption of the new age 72 for RMDs, the question I have is this: As I understand the [...]

    Read more

    By Andy Ives, CFP®, AIF® IRA Analyst Yes, you are allowed to own real estate in an IRA. Of course, not every IRA custodian will accommodate such an investment, but that doesn’t mean it is forbidden. If you want to own a beach house in your IRA, or a commercial building, or an apartment complex, you have every right to do so. But tread carefully. Owning real estate in an IRA could [...]

    Read more

    By Sarah Brenner, JD Director of Retirement Education The other day an advisor called us with an issue that comes up frequently, especially in these tumultuous times. His client had made an IRA contribution for 2021 and was planning on deducting that contribution. However, his job situation changed, and he became an active participant in a retirement plan at a new job. While the new job and [...]

    Read more

    By Ian Berger, JD IRA Analyst Question: I am 72 years old and have a Roth IRA. I have some extra cash in a bank account. Can I put that into my Roth IRA and how much can I contribute for 2021? Answer: You could potentially contribute up to $7,000 to a Roth IRA this year, but there are a few strings attached. First, you must have 2021 earned income (pay from work or self-employment) of[...]

    Read more

    Ian Berger, JD IRA Analyst In the August 16, 2021 Slott Report, we showed that someone participating in a 401(k) plan through a “regular” job could also establish a solo 401(k) plan through a side job and potentially contribute up to $58,000 this year in after-tax contributions to the solo plan. However, this only works if the company sponsoring the regular 401(k) plan and the entity [...]

    Read more

    By Andy Ives, CFP®, AIF® IRA Analyst Recently, I had a conversation with an advisor who wanted a second opinion. He disagreed with how a 401(k) custodian was handling his client’s required minimum distribution (RMD). To arm himself with facts, the advisor contacted us so he could push back on that custodian. After listening to the details, the scenario was clear. It brought me no joy to [...]

    Read more

    By Sarah Brenner, JD Director of Retirement Education Question: Ed, My client recently passed away at the age of 86 and the beneficiaries were his twin grandchildren who are six years old.  Does their 10-year clock to withdraw the funds start right away, or can they wait until they are 18 years old to start their 10-year clock to withdraw the funds? Vivek Answer: Hi Vivek,[...]

    Read more