Keep Your Hands Out of the Cookie Jar

In the challenging economic times we are currently experiencing, individuals seeking to supplement or replace lost income, or to get through financial crises such as unemployment and medical emergencies, have taken to “raiding” their own 401(k) plans. This is a fiscally risky move that could have serious consequences, both in the short term and down the road. Continue reading

Don’t Like Paying for Your 401(k) Plan Audit? Here’s an Alternative.

Companies set up a 401(k) plan for their employees for many reasons. As a vehicle that can help supplement social security income for their employees’ retirement years, a 401(k) is an important recruiting and retention tool and an excellent alternative to a traditional, company-funded pension plan. Plus, it can be rewarding to know that you are offering this support to your hard working employees. Continue reading

Death, Taxes and a Pending Deadline

“In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.”
Benjamin Franklin
In the years since Mr. Franklin penned this notable adage, the question has ironically become, “How can we best avoid the taxes caused by death?”
Gift and estate taxes have been part of the American tax scene for many years. Currently, with proper planning, a couple can pass approximately $10,000,000 of assets to their heirs without incurring additional taxes. This amount can be significantly higher depending on the type of assets and discounts that may be applied. It is also important to remember that, for a number of years prior to 2011, the gift exemption was significantly less than the estate tax exemption. Continue reading