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September 2012 Archives

Are You Missing Out on Any of These Governmental Benefits for Seniors?

A report from the National Council on Aging (NCOA) and the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging says that millions of seniors are missing out on over $20 billion in benefits simply because they are unaware these benefits are available.

How Estate Planning Can Help Fund Your Retirement

One of the biggest fears that aging parents with little retirement savings have is, who will underwrite the cost of their "golden years"? Most parents don't want to burden their children with the costs of long-term care or funeral expenses; this is where intelligent estate planning comes in.

California Estate Planning for Pet Owners

A growing trend in estate planning is the establishment of a pet trust, a legal document that ensures your pet receives the necessary care after you die. Probably the most infamous example of a pet trust is the one in Leona Helmsley's 2007 will, which left $12 million to her white Maltese, aptly named Trouble.

Feds Docking Social Security Checks for Unpaid College Loans

Adding insult to injury, most retirees are not even paying for their own educations. The financial crisis of the past few years had college students tapping their parents and grandparents for loans and that growing trend mirrors the increase in retirees whose retirement benefits checks have been docked for repayment, as seen in this chart:

Estate Planning Strategies for Same-Sex Couples and Domestic Partners

While challenges to the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) wind their way through the legal system, same-sex couples and domestic partners still need to take measures to protect themselves in case of death or disability with some basic estate planning strategies.

How to Plan for the One Tax Certainty in 2013: the 3.8% Medicare Surtax

Right now, nothing much seems certain when it comes to taxes we can plan for in 2013 and we likely won't know more until after the Nov. 6 election. However, there is one new tax many of us will see in 2012: the 3.8 percent Medicare surtax that will be used to offset the expanded costs of Obamacare.

Avoid These 4 Costly Social Security Mistakes

For most Californians, Social Security makes up an important chunk of their retirement income, so avoiding costly errors now can make a huge difference in how you will live once you retire. A recent CBS MoneyWatch report lists four costly mistakes you should avoid in order to maximize your Social Security benefits:</p>

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