Each family s financial> situation is unique, but most face some of the same basic questions: how to support kids while also saving for retirement; how to provide for long-term care; how to deal with unexpected changes; and how to get rid of that set of dishes without offending the relative who gave it to you. And what exactly just happened with health-care reform?
This week s roundup of news for those in or near retirement offers answers to these questions, and more:
Swindlers Exploit Confusion Over Health Care Law
The scams aren t new, but they ve got a new hook. Consumers still have lots of questions about what the new law does and when its provisions take effect and NPR reports that scammers are ready to take advantage of that confusion. Watch especially for offers tied to the doughnut hole in Medicare drug coverage, temporary insurance for adults with pre-existing conditions, and coverage for adult children up to age 26. This story offers tips on how to spot scams and explains the fine details of the new law.
Gift-Tax Avoidance Can Create Other Family Problems
This Chicago Tribune column answers reader questions on the gift tax and other financial issues. Find out the financial implications of adding an in-law unit to an adult child s house to create a multigenerational home, whether you can collect an ex-spouse s Social Security benefits, and how to optimize your tax situation once you start receiving minimum distributions from your IRA.
Financial Advice for a Widow
The LA Times monthly Money Makeover feature offers advice for a woman who had hoped to retire early and spend more time with her husband. After his death, she faces additional years of work and a possible move to get her finances in order. The advice could be helpful to anyone who s facing retirement with less income than expected.
Searching for Security
Continuing-care communities promise lifelong peace of mind regardless of your health, but in the wake of the financial crisis, some companies may not be able to make good on that promise. The Wall Street Journal offers advice for anyone considering a move to a continuing-care community here s how to evaluate a company s finances and the stability of its operations. If financial statements aren t your thing, take the documents to a professional. And make sure you find out what happens to you and your estate if your money runs out.
Willpower, and Maybe a Camera, to Get Rid of Your Unused Junk
Heirlooms and souvenirs have emotional power for many of us. The problem of clutter might be compounded if you find yourself storing things for both your parents and your children. The New York Times offers advice for anyone trying to cut through the clutter and offers a little perspective: Your home can t be as crowded as those of the obsessive hoarders on reality TV.