What is Financial Planning?

When it comes to financial planning, most people think about their investments. How your investments are managed is a small piece of the pie, but it’s not financial planning.
Proper tax mitigation, proper asset protection, retirement planning, paycheck protection, cash flow, and life insurance need to be integrated correctly into a financial plan, and not simply be a bunch of financial products thrown together in a “junk drawer” with no rhyme or reason.

Tax mitigation is just as important, or more important than your investments. Your return on investments isn’t doing much if you are giving half of it away to the government. We have no idea what taxes will look like when we retire. Most folks are led to believe they are in a lower tax bracket when they retire. This simply is not true. Even if the thought were to be true today, it may not be true tomorrow, next year, or when you retire.

Most folks are taught to put their money into an IRA, 401 (K) or other tax-deferred financial vehicle. At today’s rate, 30-40% of your money in these accounts are an IOU to the IRS. What will happen to your retirement if taxes increase?

  • Do you have Insurance on Your Paycheck?
    Your income is your biggest asset, yet few people protect this asset. Without it, it would be hard to support yourself and your loved ones financially. Disability is not something we ever think about, but statistically, 1 in 4 people will have a disability in their life.
    Disability can cover everything from total disability to rehabilitation from a sickness or injury. Common disabilities include
    Accidents, injuries, and poisonings
    Cancers and tumors
    Cardiovascular and circulatory diseases
    Muscle, back, and joint disorders
    Spine and nervous system-related disorders
    Mental health conditions

Can your family afford to lose your paycheck and/or pay for services needed if you become disabled? What would you do if a spouse had to stop working? We’ve seen it happen, and it’s devastating.

What about life insurance?
Permanent Life insurance has an incredible amount of uses and is one of the most valuable assets you can own.
Most people have been taught there’s only one use for life insurance, and that is for a death benefit. That simply is not true.
There are infinite ways to design a policy. The way a policy is designed depends on the needs of the individual.
We can create a policy this is focused on the death benefit and does not focus on cash accumulation, or we can create a policy that is solely focused on cash accumulation, or we can design a policy that creates a healthy balance of both.
People are living longer than ever before. It’s important to think about how you could get the extra money you might need to take care of yourself if you get a chronic or terminal illness. Many polices offer a chronic illness rider or a long-term care rider.
Permanent life insurance can be used to fund a non-qualified retirement plan, a Defined Benefit plan, a privatized banking system, or to create tax-free cash flow in retirement.

Chronic Illness Rider or Accelerated Death Benefit
This is a feature included in some life insurance policies that allows you to receive a tax-free advance on your life insurance death benefit while you are still alive. Sometimes you must pay an extra premium to add this feature to your life insurance policy. Sometimes the insurance company includes it in the policy for little or no cost. There are different types of ADBs, They each serve a different purpose. Depending on the type of policy you have, you may be able to receive a cash advance on your life insurance policy’s death benefit if::

  • You are terminally ill
  • You have a life-threatening diagnosis, such as AIDS
  • You are incapable of performing Activities of Daily Living (ADL), such as bathing or dressing

Long Term Care Rider

Long-term care insurance is expensive and is typically “use it or lose it.” Many consumers will not buy it because they know they may never use it and don’t want to waste their money. Some insurance companies have attempted to solve this problem by combining life insurance with long-term care insurance.
The amount of money you receive from these types of policies varies, but typically the accelerated benefit payment amount is capped at 50 percent of the death benefit. Other policies allow you to use the full amount of the death benefit. If this is important to you, make sure your insurance advisor understands which companies can meet your needs.
Different companies have various products that work differently. The monthly benefit you can use for nursing home care is typically equal to two percent of the life insurance policy’s face value. The amount available for home care is typically half that amount. This coverage may or may not be available.

  • Depending on the policy amount, there may be little or no health screening required. Meaning that if you have a previous health condition, it may exclude you from long-term care insurance eligibility. You can, however, still obtain a long-term care insurance policy through the ADB feature on a life insurance policy.
  • ADB policy payouts for long-term care services are often more limited than the benefits you could receive from a typical long-term care insurance policy.
  • The face value of your life insurance policy may not be enough to allow ADB payments that are enough to cover your long-term care service needs. The benefit payments may be too low and the duration may be too short to cover your long-term care service expenses.
  • ADB riders on life insurance policies may not offer inflation protection. If the policy does not include inflation protection, the ADB payment may not be sufficient to cover your future long-term care service costs.
  • If you want to leave an inheritance, you should consider whether using your life insurance death benefit to pay for long-term care services is the right option. If you use the ADB feature for long-term care services, there may be little or no death benefit remaining for your survivors.
  • Using the ADB option may affect your eligibility for Medicaid. Check with your state Medicaid agency for more information.

Life Settlements

These plans allow you to sell your life insurance policy for its present value to raise cash for any reason. This option is usually only available to women aged 74 and older and to men age 70 and older. Additionally, the proceeds of this transaction may be taxed.

Protect your business, your business partners, and your employees.
As a business owner you have a lot of responsibility to your business, your employees, and your family. If one of your partners or key employees dies or becomes disabled, there needs to be as little impact to your business as possible. You also want to attract and retain top talent.
Permanent life insurance can help with business continuation when a partner or key employee passes away.
It can also help facilitate the exchange of business ownership should you or your partner retire, become disabled, die, or get a divorce.
Inheritance
Some people purchase life insurance with the intention of leaving the death benefit as an inheritance to their loved ones. Life Insurance is an easy way to make sure everyone in the family gets an equal share of the family estate. This is common when there is a family business or family farm.
We currently have a high rate for estate taxes. But that is set to expire in 2025. The Federal estate tax is one of the things that our government frequently likes to change. Click Here to see a history of our estate tax laws.
Depending on state laws, your heirs may need to pay an estate tax upon receiving an inheritance.
Charitable Contribution
Life insurance policies can also be created with your favorite charity as a named beneficiary. This can help ensure your philanthropic goals are met after you pass away.
A good life insurance policy provides you and your family with financial security and protection that would be unavailable from any other source. There are benefits and advantages in a life insurance policy that you won’t find in the stock market, in government-sponsored retirement plans, in a real estate portfolio, or in any other investment or financial vehicle

Your Smart Money

Your Smart Money

Smart money is money your clients want to control and be able to access during times of need. While there are several options for where to keep this smart money, one that’s often overlooked is permanent life insurance. It can provide the opportunity to build cash value for financial needs down the road, while also providing death benefit protection to help a family continue or to pass down a legacy.

 

Paying for College

Paying for College

The primary purpose of life insurance is to provide a death benefit to beneficiaries. It can be designed to meet your clients’ changing needs with features such as flexible death benefits and flexible premiums. Death benefit protection can make life insurance an attractive choice for establishing a self-completing plan to help fund a college education. Permanent life insurance that can accumulate cash value may be used to help pay for college costs.

How much life insurance does someone need?

How much life insurance does someone need?

How much life insurance does someone need?

The reality is no one on this planet NEEDS life insurance. Life Insurance is a WANT. If you were to die unexpectedly and you have a stay-at-home-wife and 3 young kids, surely, they would survive. Sadly though, they may lose their house and end up on the streets, or in a one-bedroom apartment, or living with a family member, but they would survive. Perhaps your widow would have to remarry in order for your children to be well taken care of.

The amount of life insurance you get ultimately comes down to this: Do you want your family to live a worse life, an equal life, or a better life, financially, after you are gone? Would you not want your family to live the best life possible? 

You and your family have goals and dreams. These goals and dreams may depend on two incomes or they may depend on the breadwinner’s income and the other spouse holding down the fort and taking care of the family. It’s a team effort. It requires the effort of both individuals to live the life you’re currently living. The goals and dreams for your family should not change just because you’re gone.

 

When considering life insurance coverage, here some things to ponder:

 

  • Everything in life is becoming more expensive
  • Due to inflation, a million dollars today will not be a million dollars 5 years from now
  • As you go through life, your lifestyle increases and goals change, so will the amount of life insurance needed to maintain the comfort of this new lifestyle
  • If you can’t afford your current lifestyle with one income, your spouse surely can’t afford it when the other passes away 
  • When you pass, your spouse may end up with a higher tax liability due to “single” status
  • There will be bills that need to be paid, funeral costs, and possibly even estate taxes
  • You may have a business. This means you have a family and employees depending on you. Proper planning will increase the chances you family, your employees, and your business will be taken care of when you are gone.  

 

Do the right thing and make sure your family is taken care of if something should unexpectedly happen to you.