Tuesday, February 22, 2022

IRS allows taxpayers to opt out of facial recognition system

The IRS has said it will allow taxpayers to opt-out of using facial recognition technology to gain access to their online accounts, and that it will shift to an entirely different identity verification system next year, as the agency tries to alleviate backlash over its use of biometric data. The IRS, which signed a two-year contract with third-party service ID.me to help authenticate people creating online accounts by using facial recognition, said it will continue to work with the firm. Taxpayers can still choose to have images of their faces scanned to gain access to their accounts, but those who decline to use facial recognition technology can verify their identity during a live, virtual interview with representatives from the company.

Read more at ZDNet ...

Tuesday, February 15, 2022

When Must Taxes Be Paid on IRA and Employer-Sponsored Retirement Funds?

 IRA and Employer-Sponsored Retirement Funds

Traditional IRAs and most employer-sponsored retirement plans are tax-deferred accounts, which means they are typically funded with pre-tax or tax-deductible dollars. As a result, taxes are not payable until funds are withdrawn, generally in retirement.

Sunday, February 6, 2022

What Is a Required Minimum Distribution?

A required minimum distribution (RMD) is the annual amount that must be withdrawn from a traditional IRA or a qualified retirement plan (such as a 401(k), 403(b), and self-employed plans) after the account owner reaches the age of 72. The last date allowed for the first withdrawal is April 1 following the year in which the owner reaches age 72. Some employer plans may allow still-employed account owners to delay distributions until they stop working, even if they are older than 72.

Building Blocks for Financing College with Less Debt

Financing a college education with the least amount of debt involves putting together a variety of resources in the most favorable way for your family. It requires planning, savings discipline, an understanding of financial aid, smart college research, and good decision-making at college time.



Your College Fund

Your savings are the cornerstone of any successful college financing plan. It’s helpful to think of your college savings as a down payment on the full cost, similar to a down payment on a home. Then at college time you can supplement your savings with other available resources.

Setting aside money for college over many years takes discipline, and in many cases sacrifice, including lifestyle changes. Every family’s situation is different. But if you save regularly over time, you might be surprised at how much you could accumulate in your college fund.

Thursday, January 13, 2022

Charitable Giving Can Be a Family Affair

 As families grow in size and overall wealth, a desire to “give back” often becomes a priority. Cultivating philanthropic values can help foster responsibility and a sense of purpose among both young and old alike, while providing financial benefits. Charitable donations may be eligible for income tax deductions (if you itemize) and can help reduce capital gains and estate taxes. Here are four ways to incorporate charitable giving into your family’s overall financial plan.



Annual Family Giving

The holidays present a perfect opportunity to help family members develop a giving mindset. To establish an annual family giving plan, first determine the total amount that you’d like to donate as a family to charity. Next, encourage all family members to research and make a case for their favorite nonprofit organization, or divide the total amount equally among your family members and have each person donate to his or her favorite cause.

Thursday, January 6, 2022

401(k) and IRA: A Combined Savings Strategy

 Contributing to an employer-sponsored retirement plan or an IRA is a big step on the road to retirement, but contributing to both can significantly boost your retirement assets. A recent study found that, on average, individuals who owned both a 401(k) and an IRA at some point during the six-year period of the study had combined balances about 2.5 times higher than those who owned only a 401(k) or an IRA. And people who owned both types of accounts consistently over the period had even higher balances.1



Here is how the two types of plans can work together in your retirement savings strategy.