Is There a Secret Formula for Financial Wellness?

February 5th, 2019

There are many prescriptions to get to financial health. Here are four proven strategies to help you get there:

 Setting and sticking to a budget

In 2017, 78% of Americans said they were living paycheck to paycheck, up from 75% three years earlier.1 Part of the reason may be that only 41% of us use a budget,2 even though it’s one of the best ways to keep track of where our money goes.

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February Plan Sponsor Checklist:

January 31st, 2019
FEBRUARY PLAN SPONSOR CHECKLIST:

FEBRUARY PLAN SPONSOR CHECKLIST:

• Update the plan’s ERISA fidelity bond coverage to reflect the plan’s assets as of December 31 (calendar-year plans). Remember that if the plan holds employer stock, bond coverage is higher than for non-stock plans.

• Issue a reminder memo or email to all employees to encourage them to review and update, if necessary, their beneficiary designations for all benefit plans by which they are covered.

• Review and revise the roster of all plan fiduciaries and confirm each individual’s responsibilities and duties to the plan in writing. Ensure than each fiduciary understands his or her obligations to the plan.

The Ins and Outs of Long-Term Care

January 23rd, 2019

The Ins and Outs of Long-term Care

Imagine for a moment that your elderly mother slips and falls and breaks an arm and a leg. She is hospitalized and undergoes rehab — for 12 weeks. Most people think of chronic illnesses when they think of long-term care, but accidents can also trigger the need for extended nursing care, as well as physical and occupational therapy.

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Hoping For A Century?

January 17th, 2019

FMI: Hoping For A Century?

It’s funny, sometimes I run into people in the street who ask me how my grandfather is doing – not because they know him, but because I quite often write about him and how his advice has had such an influence on me.

I recently returned from Australia where I visited my grandfather each day in his nursing home. It was hard to see the change in him and how, at 99 years old, his body is clearly shutting down. His 100th birthday is in March and, as we say in Australia, “He has had a good innings.” But the question is, will he bat a century?  Read the rest of this entry »

Reminder: Check Your Tax Withholding

January 15th, 2019

FMI Check Your Tax Withholding

The Tax Cut and Jobs Act of 2017 included several provisions that could affect the taxes you pay in 2018 and in the future. If you haven’t already done so, be sure to check with your HR department or benefits manager to verify that you are not under- or over-withholding federal and state tax payments.

When Employees Ask For Advice About Retirement Savings

January 11th, 2019

When Employees Ask For Advice About Retirement Savings

Employees may ask you for advice about how much of their income they should be saving for retirement, how much they should already have saved, and how much they will need. It’s never a good idea to give one-size-fits-all answers to these important questions, but it’s good that you’re interested in helping participants learn more.

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How Student Loan Debt Impacts Retirement Savings

January 3rd, 2019

FMI: How Student Loan Debt Impacts Retirement Savings

If your workforce includes recent college graduates, it’s likely that some of them have debt associated with their college years. Student debt may play a large part in the finances of these young (and even not-so-young) employees; that’s why a complete picture of employee financial wellness should consider it. Read the rest of this entry »

Managing A Financial Windfall

December 27th, 2018

FMI: Managing A Financial Windfall

At some point in their lives, most people have thought about what they would do if they had a sudden positive change in their finances – maybe quit their job, travel the world, buy a house or pay off their mortgage. I certainly have played the game with my husband, dreaming about what we would do if we inherited or won a million dollars! Neither of these has happened and both are probably a LONGSHOT. If it does happen, boy, do I have plans for those dollars….

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January Plan Sponsor Checklist

December 18th, 2018

January Plan Sponsor Checklist

JANUARY PLAN SPONSOR CHECKLIST:

• Send payroll and employee census data to the plan’s recordkeeper for plan-year-end compliance testing (calendar-year plans).

• Audit fourth quarter payroll and plan deposit dates to ensure compliance with the Department of Labor’s rules regarding timely deposit of participant contributions and loan repayments.

• Verify that employees who became eligible for the plan between October 1 and December 31 received and returned an enrollment form. Follow up for forms that were not returned.