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What Will You Pay for Medicare in 2021?

What Will You Pay for Medicare in 2021?

Medicare premiums, deductibles, and coinsurance amounts change annually. Here's a look at some of the costs that will apply in 2021 if you're enrolled in Original Medicare Part A and Part B. Medicare Part B premiums According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), most people with Medicare who receive Social Security benefits will pay the standard monthly Part B premium of $148.50 in 2021. People with higher incomes may pay more than the standard premium. If your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) as reported on your federal income tax return from two years ago (2019) is above…
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Understanding Your Credit Report

Understanding Your Credit Report

Your credit report contains information about your past and present credit transactions. It's used primarily by potential lenders to evaluate your creditworthiness. So if you're about to apply for credit, especially for something significant like a mortgage, you'll want to get and review a copy of your credit report. You can see what they see: getting a copy of your credit report Every consumer is entitled to a free credit report every 12 months from each of the three credit bureaus: Experian,TransUnion, and Equifax. Besides the annual report, you are also entitled to a free report under the following circumstances: A company has…
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Trust Basics

Trust Basics

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 — many types of trusts exist, each designed for a specific purpose. Although trust law is complex and establishing a trust requires the services of an experienced attorney, mastering the basics isn't hard. What is a trust? A trust is a legal entity that holds assets for the benefit of another. Basically, it's like a container that holds money or property for somebody else.…
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Getting Started: Establishing a Financial Safety Net

Getting Started: Establishing a Financial Safety Net

In times of crisis, you don't want to be shaking pennies out of a piggy bank. Having a financial safety net in place can ensure that you're protected when a financial emergency arises. One way to accomplish this is by setting up a cash reserve, a pool of readily available funds that can help you meet emergency or highly urgent short-term needs. How much is enough? Most financial professionals suggest that you have three to six months' worth of living expenses in your cash reserve. The actual amount, however, should be based on your particular circumstances. Do you have a…
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Net Unrealized Appreciation: The Untold Story

Net Unrealized Appreciation: The Untold Story

If you participate in a 401(k), ESOP, or other qualified retirement plan that lets you invest in your employer's stock, you need to know about net unrealized appreciation — a simple tax deferral opportunity with an unfortunately complicated name. When you receive a distribution from your employer's retirement plan, the distribution is generally taxable to you at ordinary income tax rates. A common way of avoiding immediate taxation is to make a tax-free rollover to a traditional IRA. However, when you ultimately receive distributions from the IRA, they'll also be taxed at ordinary income tax rates. (Special rules apply to…
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