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Retirement Tax Forecast Icon

We may not know what tax legislation will look like on the exact date you retire, but there is great value in forecasting what we do know. As one example among many, if you are required to take minimum distributions from retirement accounts at age 73, you will likely face a tax balloon. We can plan to minimize the effects of those distributions with a retirement tax forecast.

Knowing that your income streams are not all equal in the eyes of the tax-man, it’s essential to know when you should start drawing from each and how much to withdraw. Considering that one additional withdrawal from the wrong place at the wrong time could mean a tax rate of 49.95%, income planning becomes essential to tax minimization.

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Social Security Benefits Optimization

There are 96 different months you can claim your Social Security benefits. If you are married, that’s 192 different numbers. It’s not just about the largest benefit number either, because there are five different ways to file for these benefits.

Much of the time, individuals only plan to utilize their retired worker benefit. That’s the benefit you learn about on your Social Security statement mailed to you starting on your 60th birthday. When you begin to include options your spouse would have, survivor benefits, and advanced filing options – there are over 20,000 variations about how a married couple could file for benefits.

On average, Social Security makes up 64.8 percent of total household income, so we need to manage it like an asset. Strategizing on when and how to file is a critical retirement decision. Optimizing your benefits means taking into account all of your other assets and income sources

Income from Social Security is subject to federal income taxes if your combined income reaches a certain level. Combined income consists of your adjusted gross income (income from your wages, dividends, capital gains, business income, retirement distributions, as well as other income), nontaxable income, and half of your Social Security benefits.

Based on the current tax laws, if your combined income exceeds $34,000 filing as a single person, or $44,000 filing as a married couple, up to 85% of your Social Security benefits may be taxable. Understanding those implications and the tax implications for your other assets might make you reconsider when to file for Social Security.

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Tax Deferral Icon

Deferring tax on earnings (interest, dividends, or capital gains) until retirement can create substantial returns. Instead of premature taxation on an annual level, which could erode annual returns, the taxation is triggered only upon withdrawal. In many cases–with proper planning–the tax rate in retirement will be lower, making tax deferral attractive.

Taxation is usually the most significant expense for small businesses. Savvy business owners look at lowering taxes as a way of increasing income. Some of the other challenges facing small businesses include rewarding key employees and protecting against their loss, as well as planning for an exit strategy.

We work on an individualized level along with a team of CPAs and attorneys to assist our business clients with a strategic, tax-advantaged plan to maximize business assets and create sustainability.

Small Business Planning
Tax-Free Bonds Icon

Bonds issued by municipalities will commonly be tax-free at the federal level. The tax-exempt nature of their interest can make them an attractive investment held in non-retirement accounts as their interest will not be taxed on an annual basis.

Liquidity, low volatility, and high credit quality can make municipal bonds a great play in the right scenario.

Estate planning is a consideration when determining how to optimize your Social Security benefits. The catalyst may be to protect the surviving spouse or to minimize the long-term effects of taxation on your benefits. Replacing the reduction to a surviving spouse’s income and aiming to decrease your taxes for the length of your retirement are factors that affect coordinating the plan for filing your Social Security benefits.

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The first step toward achieving your retirement goals is having a plan…