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What’s on our mind? You can read about it in our blog. Whether it’s ideas from the industry or emerging trends, you can read about it here. And once in a while, we may throw in a movie review or some other surprise. So keep checking in. We’re glad to have you reading along.

Monday, July 19, 2021

What is it? In general, you can transfer all or a portion of your traditional IRA funds to a Roth IRA. This can be accomplished in one of two ways: You can convert your traditional IRA to a Roth IRA, or you can roll over funds from...

Monday, July 12, 2021

What is it? Both you and your employer are subject to requirements concerning income tax withholding . Many of these requirements concern Form W-4, the IRS form that enables employers to determine how much to withhold from your...

Monday, July 5, 2021

What are business life cycles, and what is their relationship to business planning? Generally, businesses pass through three stages before reaching the final stage of decline. The time it takes to reach or to pass through each stage...

Monday, June 28, 2021

What is a beneficiary? Receiver of death proceeds A beneficiary is the individual or entity you name (designate) to receive the proceeds of a life insurance policy on your life. Irrevocable versus revocable A beneficiary can be...

Monday, June 7, 2021

In general During your working years, you've probably set aside funds in retirement accounts such as IRAs, 401(k)s or other workplace savings plans, as well as in taxable accounts. As you approach retirement, you'll need to consider...

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Monday, May 31, 2021

Introduction Long-term care insurance (LTCI) policies offered by insurance companies can be purchased directly from the companies, through an insurance agent, through your employer, or through an association. If you work for the...

Sunday, May 23, 2021

Whether you're seeking to manage your own assets, control how your assets are distributed after your death, or plan for incapacity, trusts can help you accomplish your estate planning goals. Their power is in their versatility —...

Sunday, May 16, 2021

Self-employment is the opportunity to be your own boss, to come and go as you please, and oh yes, to establish a lifelong bond with your accountant. If you're self-employed, you'll need to pay your own FICA taxes and take charge of...

Monday, May 10, 2021

If you have qualifying children under the age of 18, you may be able to claim a child tax credit. (You may also be able to claim a partial credit for certain other dependents who are not qualifying children.) The American Rescue Plan...

Monday, April 26, 2021

On December 21, 2020, Congress passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, another relief package in response to the pandemic. Included in the bill were several provisions related to education, including many changes to financial...

Monday, April 19, 2021

There's Still Time to Contribute to an IRA for 2020 Even though tax filing season is well under way, there's still time to make a regular IRA contribution for 2020. You have until your tax return due date (not including extensions) to...

Monday, April 12, 2021

Roth Conversion at Death Case Scenario: Sarah Roth (age 73) is a prospective new client. She is recently widowed. Her husband, Bill (who was 75), has $1,000,000 in his retirement accounts and she received $400,000 life insurance...

Monday, April 5, 2021

What’s the best retirement strategy for you? What type of retirement account will provide a larger balance and therefore greater distributions? Will it be a traditional IRA, 401(k), 403(b), etc., where contributions are either...

Monday, March 22, 2021

American Rescue Plan Act Provides Relief to Individuals and Businesses On Thursday, March 11, 2021, the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA 2021) was signed into law. This is a $1.9 trillion emergency relief package that includes...

Monday, March 15, 2021

The 401(k) plan is becoming the single largest source of retirement savings for a majority of American workers. According to the Society of Professional Administrators and Recordkeepers (SPARK), over 55 million people participate in...

Monday, March 8, 2021

Saving for retirement is not easy but using your retirement savings wisely can be just as challenging. How much of your savings can you withdraw each year? Withdraw too much and you run the risk of running out of money. Withdraw too...

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Earn your full savings potential by hitting the full match plus more. For help finding the correct deferral amount for you, contact our financial professional, Doug D’Andrea at 860-521-4015 or ddandrea@integritybenefitpartners...

Monday, February 8, 2021

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. This saying is universal, and certainly applies to fiduciary responsibility. Beginning the year with an eye towards avoiding some of the most common errors makes sense. Most fiduciary...

Monday, February 1, 2021

We know that most plan participants are not financial experts, and that can make planning for retirement difficult. Fortunately, there are some basic steps that you can follow to work toward a successful retirement. Learn the basics of...

Monday, January 18, 2021

Take Charge of Your 401(k) HIGHLIGHTS INCLUDE: Powerful information that could potentially save you thousands in taxes and fees Tips to help put you one step ahead in your retirement preparations Critical mistakes that cannot be...

Monday, January 11, 2021

As a business owner, you face unique challenges and opportunities when building a financial future. This special report provides insights on mistakes to avoid and steps to take when building the retirement you desire—while...

Tuesday, January 5, 2021

If you're self-employed or own a small business, you've probably considered establishing a retirement plan. If you've done your homework, you likely know about simplified employee pensions (SEPs) and savings incentive match plans for...

Monday, December 28, 2020

An individual retirement arrangement (IRA) is a personal savings plan that offers specific tax benefits. IRAs are one of the most powerful retirement savings tools available to you. Even if you're contributing to a 401(k) or other plan...

Monday, December 14, 2020

Employers can offer 401(k) plan participants the opportunity to make Roth 401(k) contributions. If you're lucky enough to work for an employer who offers this option, Roth contributions could play an important role in maximizing your...

Thursday, December 10, 2020

Employer-sponsored qualified retirement plans such as 401(k)s are some of the most powerful retirement savings tools available. If your employer offers such a plan and you're not participating in it, you should be. Once you're...

Monday, November 30, 2020

Understanding Defined Benefit Plans You may be counting on funds from a defined benefit plan to help you achieve a comfortable retirement. Often referred to as traditional pension plans, defined benefit plans promise to pay you a...

Monday, November 23, 2020

Retirement Plans for Small Businesses As a business owner, you should carefully consider the advantages of establishing an employer-sponsored retirement plan. Generally, you're allowed certain tax benefits for establishing an...

Monday, November 16, 2020

Many IRA and retirement plan limits are indexed for inflation each year. While some of the limits remain unchanged for 2021, other key numbers have increased. IRA contribution limits The maximum amount you can contribute to a...

Monday, November 9, 2020

If you own a small business, you may be finding it increasingly necessary to implement a benefit program to attract and retain employees. For small businesses, benefit plans generally consist of some of the major insurance benefits,...

Monday, November 2, 2020

Phased retirement includes a range of flexible retirement approaches that would allow employees approaching normal retirement age the option to reduce the hours worked while phasing into complete retirement. For employees, phased...

Monday, October 26, 2020

Employers have heard a lot about financial wellness. However, employers don’t always recognize the connection between financial wellness and improved retirement savings behavior as well as a more productive workforce overall. All...

Monday, October 19, 2020

Don’t Cash Out Retirement Plans When Changing Employment When you leave a job, the vested benefits in your retirement plan are an enticing source of money. It may be difficult to resist the urge to take that money as cash,...

Monday, October 12, 2020

There are clear differences between President Donald Trump and Former Vice President Joe Biden (and the political parties they represent) when it comes to tax policies, spending priorities, and overall economic strategies. For this...

Monday, October 5, 2020

On August 18, 2020, the S&P 500 set a record high for the first time since COVID-19 ushered in a bear market on February 19. The cycle from peak to peak was just 126 trading days, the fastest recovery in the history of the index,...

Monday, September 28, 2020

IRAs and employer-sponsored retirement plans are subject to annual contribution limits set by the federal government. The limits are adjusted periodically to compensate for inflation and increases in the cost of living. IRAsFor the...

Monday, September 21, 2020

What is using life insurance and estate planning for retirementplans? The assets in your qualified and nonqualified retirement plans will be included in your gross estate when you die. For those whohave accumulated substantial assets...

Sunday, September 13, 2020

Rowe Price did a deep dive into its recordkeeping data and surfaced with a few important points. Its “Reference Point Report is an annual client data benchmarking report so plan sponsors can review trends and benchmark their...

Monday, September 7, 2020

Employer-sponsored retirement plans are more valuable than ever. The money in them accumulates tax deferred until it is withdrawn, typically in retirement. Distributions from a tax-deferred retirement plan such as a 401(k) are taxed as...

Friday, August 28, 2020

You might wonder why I chose my profession. When I finished college, I sold life insurance to make money until I could find work more suited to my passion. I was always attracted to healthcare and really wanted to work in medicine. I...

Monday, August 17, 2020

Annuities and Retirement Planning You may have heard that IRAs and employer-sponsored plans [e.g., 401(k)s] are the best ways to invest for retirement. That'strue for many people, but what if you've maxed out your contributions to...

Monday, August 10, 2020

What is it? As the name suggests, an employer-sponsored retirement plan is a plan that an employer sets up and maintains for its employees' retirement. A qualified retirement plan is an employer-sponsored retirement plan that receives...

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Subsequent to the 2012 implementation of ERISA fee reporting regulations (ERISA 408(b)(2) & 404(a)(5)), the Department of Labor (DOL) began to consider the appropriateness of the allocation of plan fees among participants. This is a...

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Businesses understand how vital it is for employees to understand retirement options and are increasingly including employee education in fiduciary risk management, whether it’s in the form of one-on-one counseling or educational...

Monday, June 22, 2020

Beware of the IRS and DOL: Four Red Flags They Seek on Form 5500 The Form 5500 is an ERISA requirement for retirement plans to report and disclose operating procedures. Advisors use this to confirm that plans are managed according to...

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Establishing a Budget Do you ever wonder where your money goes each month? Does it seem like you're never able to get ahead? If so, you may want to establish a budget to help you keep track of how you spend your money and help you...

Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Your team has undertaken the due diligence to research various service providers. Based on a myriad of data points, experience, potential interviews of candidates, internal analysis and discussion, your team has decided it is prudent...

Monday, June 1, 2020

The recent market volatility brought on by COVID-19 has been unsettling to investors as the way forward has become more uncertain and in some cases, changed daily. Recent market volatility has been both dramatic on the downside, with...

Monday, May 25, 2020

Watch Out for Coronavirus Scams Fraudsters and scam artists are always looking for new ways to prey on consumers. Now they are using the same tactics to take advantage of consumers' heightened financial and health concerns over the...

Friday, May 15, 2020

During the last week of February 2020, the S&P 500 lost 11.49% — the worst week for stocks since the 2008 financial crisis — only to jump by 4.6% on the first Monday in March. 1 By all accounts, the drop was largely driven...

Friday, May 1, 2020

Bear Markets and Past Market Declines As of March 12, 2020, the S&P 500 Index entered into bear market territory, defined as a 20% decline from the index’s past high. The Dow Jones Industrial Index, another often quoted index,...

Monday, April 27, 2020

Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (“CARES") Act, enacted March 27, 2020 (summarized in two pieces—provisions primarily affecting individuals (in a separate piece) and provisions primarily affecting businesses...

Monday, April 20, 2020

Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (“CARES") Act, enacted March 27, 2020 (summarized in two pieces—provisions primarily affecting individuals below and provisions primarily affecting businesses in a separate...

Monday, April 6, 2020

Updated March 30, 2020 CARES Act Legislation Summary On March 27, 2020, the Coronavirus, Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (the “Act”) was signed into law. A portion of the Act is intended to loosen access to...

Monday, April 6, 2020

COVID-19 INSIGHTS FOR RETIREMENT PLAN SPONSORS As of March 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has made its impact throughout the United States. Not only has it had a significant effect to the economy, it has changed nearly every Americans way...

Thursday, April 2, 2020

We are living in unprecedented times -experiencing a world-wide pandemic, which translated to a financial crisis. It is surreal. A few weeks ago, we were leading our normal lives, and seemingly overnight everything changed. People grew...

Monday, March 9, 2020

Retirement plan fees are complicated. Between administration, investment management, record-keeping, consulting, revenue sharing, sub-TA and 12b-1, it isn’t always clear to plan participants or plan sponsors exactly what...

Monday, March 2, 2020

IRA contribution limits The maximum amount you can contribute to a traditional IRA or a Roth IRA in 2020 is $6,000 (or 100% of your earned income, if less), unchanged from 2019. The maximum catch-up contribution for those age 50 or...

Monday, February 24, 2020

Questions & Answers Which employees do you have to include in your cash balance plan? You generally must include all employees who are at least 21 years old and have at least one year of service. Two years of service may be required...

Monday, February 17, 2020

Advantages of cash balance plans The plan offers guaranteed pension benefits for employees This is the key similarity between cash balance plans and traditional pension plans. Each participant ultimately receives a dollar amount...

Monday, February 10, 2020

Tax benefits of cash balance plans Tax considerations for employees When you contribute to a cash balance plan on behalf of your participating employees, those employer contributions are not currently included in the employees' taxable...

Monday, February 3, 2020

How does it work? Hypothetical accounts Each participant in a cash balance plan has a hypothetical individual account or "cash balance" established for record-keeping purposes. With these hypothetical accounts, participants can easily...

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

What is a cash balance plan? A cash balance plan is a qualified employer-sponsored retirement plan that has become increasingly common in recent years as an alternative to (or replacement of) the traditional defined benefit pension...

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

The Fundamentals of Disability Insurance Disability insurance pays benefits when you are unable to earn a living because you are sick or injured. Most disability policies pay you a benefit that replaces a percentage of your earned...

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Do I need disability income insurance? Although most of us are aware of the need for health insurance coverage when determining our risk management needs, many of us fail to consider the possibility that we could become disabled. A...

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Questions & Answers Which employees do you have to include in your new comparability plan? In general, to be "qualified" (i.e., tax exempt), a plan must meet employee coverage tests that demonstrate that the plan does not discriminate...

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

When can it be used? Generally, any employer is eligible to set up a new comparability plan While just about any employer can set up a new comparability plan, it is most suitable for businesses with owners and principals who: Want the...

Friday, November 22, 2019

What is it? In general A new comparability plan is a qualified profit-sharing plan that can have more substantial contributions for favored employees (usually higher-paid workers and key employees). With this type of plan,...

Monday, November 18, 2019

When can it be used? You anticipate the need for long-term care, you wish to protect your assets for your loved ones, and you can afford to pay the premiums. When buying an LTCI policy, you must consider not only whether you can afford...

Monday, November 11, 2019

Avoiding penalties is a crucial piece of wealth management. Long-Term Care Insurance (LTCI) is no exception. One of the advantages of LTCI is the ability to leave a legacy to loved ones after entering a nursing home, but let’s...

Friday, October 25, 2019

Long-Term Care Insurance (LTCI) can be an asset when used as a protection planning tool. As with any wealth management or retirement planning tool, it is important to weight the strengths and tradeoffs to decide if it is the right fit...

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Long-Term Care Insurance (LTCI) can be a great addition to your overall asset protection strategy under the right circumstances. Below we define LTCI and how to use it as a retirement planning tool. What is it? Long-term care insurance...

Monday, September 16, 2019

Fall clean-up: it’s time to check the honey and your money I am a beekeeper. I started my apiary earlier this year with two hives, and I am hoping that one day I will be able to share honey with my friends and family while I...

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

How Teaching my Daughter to Ride Her Bicycle Completely Changed my Perspective on Investing This is a photograph of me with my daughter Deborah about ten years ago starting the MS Bike Tour in New York. It was one of many rides we...