Estate Planning 2015
Blended families page 5
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Women vs. Men page 8
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Getting to know the basics With regards to finances, the future is a big part of many people’s financial planning efforts. Be it the kids’ college tuition or the day when retirement arrives, financial planning is all about the future. Though college and retirement funds garner the most attention, men and women must also make time for estate planning. Estate planning is the process of arranging for the disposal of an estate and is done to help minimize uncertainty upon an individual’s death. This planning also reduces taxes and additional expenses that might arise if a person passes away without having left a will or another means of disposing of his or her estate. Regardless of the size of an individual’s estate, there’s no reason not to have an estate plan in place. The following are some of the basics of estate planning, which should be a priority for men and women, young and old.
Estate 2015 Planning
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MORE THAN JUST A WILL
An estate plan is more than just a will. Though an up-to-date and specific will is an important element of a good estate plan, there are other elements as well. In addition to a will, an estate plan
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>> BASICS, continued on 4
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should assign power of attorney, which gives a person of an individual’s choosing the right to manage that individual’s financial affairs if they are unable to do so themselves. Power of attorney should be assigned in the case of a person’s death, but also if an unforeseen medical issue arises and a person is no longer capable of managing their affairs. There are two types of power of attorney that are essential to know when estate planning. Springing power of attorney goes into effect when circumstances that the individual specified, such as incapacitation, occur. In order for this to go into effect, the agent designated must typically produce proof of an individual’s incapacitation. Durable power of attorney goes into effect immediately and the agent does not need to prove incapacitation. When choosing an agent to assume power of attorney, individuals need to make this decision wisely, choosing someone they trust who can competently manage their affairs.
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The value of working with a financial pro NewsUSA
Comprehensive inventory is a must << BASICS, continued from 3 Individuals must take careful inventory of all of their assets and determine to whom these assets should go if they die or who should gain control of them if individuals become incapacitated. This means leaving no stone unturned. If there are any questions about specific assets, then legal wrangling or even government taxation upon these assets is likely to take place.
nent life insurance can be used to launch a second career, pay for a grandchild’s education or supplement retirement revenue streams. Permanent life insurance also allows other elements of a financial plan, such as annuities, investments or disability insurance, to do their job.
Over the last several years, planning for retirement has been anything but simple. Market uncertainty, lower real estate prices and, for some, job loss or stagnant salaries have made saving and investing for a sound financial future more challenging than ever. That’s where a financial professional comes into play. A financial professional can help you save, invest and grow your money while protecting what matters to you: your family, a business or standard of living. But, how do you find a financial professional that’s a good fit for you?
EDUCATION AND TRAINING
Make sure the financial professional has the proper education and training. Here are the top credentials to look for: • Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU): An insurance designation often held by those who specialize in life insurance and estate planning and given by The American College, a nonprofit dedicated to educating individuals in financial services. • Certified Financial Planner (CFP): A designation given and governed by the Certified Finacial Planner Board of Standards. • Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC): A designation on par with the CFP, also given by The American College.
Start by considering his or her philosophy and approach to retirement planning. In today’s tenuous financial environment, a professional who believes permanent life insurance plays a critical role in a financial plan should be a strong consideration. Permanent life insurance provides a guaranteed safety net, should the unthinkable happen. A death benefit can give you peace of mind that your family or business is properly protected. Plus, the cash accumulation potential of perma-
Many people hear the word trust associated with financial dealings and immediately assume it only applies to the wealthy. Nothing could be further from the truth. A trust enables men and women to put conditions on the distribution of their assets upon their death, including when and how these assets will be distributed. In addition, a trust might just protect these assets from creditors or lawsuits and help any heirs avoid probate court, which can be a costly and tedious process. Though trusts aren’t necessarily for everyone, they also aren’t exclusive to the very wealthy.
ALLOCATION OF ASSETS
Make certain you have a good comfort level with the financial professional.
>> PRO, continued on 9
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Many people make the mistake of leaving all of their assets to their spouses upon their deaths. While this is well-intentioned, it doesn’t always work out best for men and women with children. Individuals can leave an unlimited amount of money to their spouse upon their death, and that money cannot be taxed. However, when the surviving spouse dies, if he or she leaves that money to their surviving children, then they are likely going to pay significantly more in estate tax. In addition, when deciding to simply leave all assets to a surviving spouse, this is, in a sense, leaving the difficult decision of asset allocation to the surviving spouse. What’s more, should both husband and wife pass away in an accident at the same time and all assets were left to a spouse, this can make it very difficult, contentious and costly for surviving family members to divide up any assets left behind. Estate planning is something few people will embrace with open arms. But as morbid as estate planning might seem, it’s a necessary step for adults who want to secure their own futures should they become incapacitated or the futures of their loved ones when individuals pass away.
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Understanding needs of ‘blended families’ Christopher J. Riffle and David J. Berger, attorneys, Platt Irwin Law Firm, Port Angeles and Port Townsend People generally agree they should have an estate plan (e.g., a will or trust). However, most would prefer to watch paint dry or think about how the Seahawks could have blown another fourth quarter lead instead of pondering their own mortality and what will happen to their family and things after they are gone. While the estate planning process can seem daunting (and expensive), the reality is that developing a plan to ensure your loved ones are taken care of when you are gone usually brings a sense of relief and accomplishment. Estate planning is particularly important for “blended families.” A “blended family” — aka a “step family”— is a family unit where one or both parents have children from a previous relationship (think the Brady Bunch). Blended families are becoming a “new normal” in America. According to the Pew Research Center, 40 percent of married couples with children in the U.S. are “stepcouples,” with at least one partner having a child from a
previous marriage. In 1960, only 13 percent of married adults were in a second or subsequent marriage. Today, this number is around 25 percent. In a blended family scenario, people’s ideas of what they want to happen after they die tend to be more complicated. Some people want to ensure their new spouse is taken care of and then their own biological children (but not necessarily the step children). Others want to bypass their second spouses altogether, focusing instead on their kids. Still others want a more “traditional” outcome, where all kids are treated equally. With all of the variables in a blended family situation, it is important to spend time creating a careful and comprehensive estate plan. Here, we recommend several steps to accomplish this:
SET ASIDE TIME
You should set aside time and talk with your spouse about what will happen with your assets when you die. This will likely be difficult to do, but good communication is extremely important to ensure you and your spouse are on the same page about how you would like your assets to be distributed — and how the kids should be taken care
of— when you die.
You should review your beneficiary designations on certain accounts (like bank accounts, life insurance, 401(k) and IRAs) to ensure these are set up in a way that benefits your blended family in the way you want. These sorts of accounts — often referred to as “nonprobate assets” — usually pass outside of an estate plan, meaning that what you say in your will or trust will probably not affect how these accounts are passed on to loved ones. It is therefore very important that your beneficiary designations reflect how you want these accounts to be distributed in your new blended family situation. As an aside, you should also review these designations to ensure your former spouse has been removed as a beneficiary, even if you dealt with it in a divorce decree or agreement.
BLEND OR SEPARATE?
If it is important for you and your new spouse to have a detailed understanding of how you want assets to be blended or kept separate, you may consider making a prenuptial agreement, or “prenup,” before marrying or remarrying.
>> BLENDED, continued on 7
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Choosing a funeral home a vital step in estate process
Welcoming peninsuladailynews.com sequimgazette.com
Douglas R. Ticknor, Drennan & Ford Funeral Home and Crematory, Port Angeles
ew Clients & Caregivers … Welcoming Welcoming Clients& & Caregivers …… NewNew Clients Caregivers Welcoming
Last year, I wrote “10 Things You Should Know Before You Make Funeral Arrangements in Clallam County” for Estate Planning and received an overwhelming response from the community. Based on that response, I will follow up on how to decide which funeral home to use.
TAKE A TOUR
First, take a physical tour of the facility you want to use. All businesses in Washington that offer funeral or cremation serves are considered (and must be licensed as) funeral establishments. Most people don’t pay attention to who’s who until they actually need those services. You want to know where the business is actually located. Why is this important? In recent years, there has been a rise in slick television ads that offer low-cost cremation services. They will be happy to send a salesman to your home to KWA Homecare provides help with write up a contract and have you pay in advance for the daily activities such as bathing, services you want. transferring, dressing, KWA Homecaretoileting, provides help with transportation to medical appointments, But when the death occurs (sometimes at your home), they daily activities such as bathing, KWA Homecare provides help with shopping & housework. can be hard to reach by phone, tell you their “driver” will be Our activities caregivers are available 24 hours a day, such as bathing, there in 18-24 hours, or you will simply be told “we no lonKWA Homecare provides help with toileting,daily transferring, dressing, 7 days a week, including holidays. toileting, transferring, daily activities suchdressing, as bathing, ger serve your area” and encourage you to use a local funeral nsportation to medical appointments, toileting, transferring, dressing, transportation to medical appointments, home (paying for their services) and apply for a refund by transportation to medical appointments, supplying them with a death certificate. shopping &Highest housework. shopping & shopping housework. Quality Care. Most Affordable Price. & housework. Highest Quality Care. Most Affordable Price. To make matters worse, remember that contract you Our caregivers are available 24 hours a day, Our caregivers are available 24 hours a day, caregivers7 days are available 24 hours a day, • • holidays. signed? a week, including holidays. a7 days week, including Port Angeles Port Sequim Homecare provides help Townsend with One such company has been known to force clients to 7 days a week,KWA including holidays. dailyHomecare activities provides such as bathing, www.kwacares.org email@example.com KWA help•with “take possession” of the urn — often over-priced as the toileting, transferring, daily activities such asdressing, bathing, Highest Quality Care. Most Affordable Price. major component of the contract — at the time the contract transportation to medical appointments, toileting, transferring, dressing, Highest Quality Care. Most Affordable Price. Highest Care. Most Affordable Price. is signed. shopping &Quality housework. transportation to medical appointments, • 24 hours • Wage Highest Care. Most Affordable Price. you want to cancel your contract, they do Our caregivers are available a day, Quality shopping & housework. If eventually Competitive Starting Port Angeles Port Townsend Sequim 7 days a week, including24holidays. Our caregivers are available hours a day, not have to refund this to you, saying you are “free to use it Highest Quality Care. Affordable Price. www.kwacares.org • firstname.lastname@example.org Medical, Vision &Most Dental Benefits 7 days a week, including holidays. Port Angeles Port Townsend Sequim elsewhere.” Paid Leave• email@example.com • Paid Training Trust your instinct on this one. www.kwacares.org Highest Quality Care. Most Affordable Price. By making an appointment and paying your local funeral Highest QualityPrice. Care. Most Affordable Price. Highest Quality Care. Most Affordable www.kwacares.org Competitive Starting Wage home a visit, you will definitely know whether you wish to Highest Quality Care. Most Affordable Price. • • rt Angeles Port Townsend Sequim Port Angeles • Port Townsend • Sequim do business with them. Medical, Vision & Dental Benefits Port Angeles Port Sequim www.kwacares.org firstname.lastname@example.org I recommend visiting at least two different funeral homes www.kwacares.org • •Townsend email@example.com www.kwacares.org Paid Leave• •firstname.lastname@example.org Paid Training owned by different owners prior to signing anything.
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253-535-4202 Competitive Starting Wage www.kwahomecare.com 253-535-4202 Caregiver www.kwahomecare.com www.kwacares.org Medical, Vision &Positions Dental BenefitsASK ABOUT PERSONAL PREFERENCES Caregiver Positions www.kwahomecare.com Competitive Starting Wage www.kwahomecare.com Second, ask people who have worked with — not for — Competitive Starting • Paid Training Paid Leave Medical, Vision & Dental Wage Benefits different funeral homes which one they personally would Medical, Vision •& Dental Benefits choose. www.kwacares.org Competitive Starting Wage Paid Training Paid Leave
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I say “personally” because some are actually prohibited from offering a professional recommendation.
Medical, Vision & Dental Benefits
I would talk to people at your local hospital, county coroner’s office or the nurses at various hospice organizations. Talk with people who have used a particular funeral home. If you have a minister, ask him/her which one they would use.
Third, ask the “uncomfortable questions.” A funeral director with experience is not going to evade or shy away from your questions. Ask to see the crematory when it is not in use. Is it there or will you have to be taken elsewhere? Ask what the funeral home and crematory do with medical implants such as hip-replacements, pacemakers and goldtooth-fillings. Are these considered “part of the person” and placed in the urn? Are they discarded after the ashes are placed in the urn, or treated as a “bonus” to be recycled for further profit later on? The fact that this practice may be legal, if properly disclosed, does not make it any less unethical. If this offends you, you might want to choose another crematory and/or funeral home.
Fourth and fifth, ask the funeral home if they have ever been fined by state Department of Licensing and ask them to provide details. Follow-up by making sure the ownership has not changedhands recently as new owners are reluctant to admit past owner shenanigans —but are ready to take credit for being long-established. I would then follow that up with a call to the state department to verify. Even if you just want a simple cremation without any accompanying services, you have the right to a dignified and thoughtful disposition.
Douglas Ticknor is a licensed funeral director and embalmer with 24 years experience. For the past 12 years, Ticknor has been with Drennan & Ford Funeral Home and Crematory in Port Angeles, the only locally owned funeral home and crematory in Clallam County. Ticknor can be reached at 360-457-1210 or douglas@ drennanford.com. For more information, visit www.drennanford.com or find the business on Facebook.
Peninsula Daily News/Sequim Gazette
Coordinate with your spouse << BLENDED, continued from 5
Prenups are contracts between prospective spouses concerning who will own their respective assets should they divorce. They are being increasingly used as an estate planning tool; however, prenups are not comprehensive. It is important to coordinate a prenuptial agreement with a full estate plan.
FIND AN ATTORNEY
You should find a qualified estate planning attorney to help you navigate your way through the estate planning process. An attorney will be able to help you think through issues and concerns related to estate planning and your blended family (including some of the issues addressed above), and also assist you with preparing the appropriate plan to fit your needs. This will often include drafting a will and/ or trust, durable powers of attorney and various other estate planning tools available to ensure your plan accomplishes your goals. We have all heard horror stories about nasty estate/probate legal battles.
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No matter how much we like to think our loved ones will act rationally and treat each other with respect, the reality is that the emotions tied to the death of a loved one and the potential availability of assets creates natural ingredients for dispute. These issues are often more intense in a blended family scenario. By spending some time thinking through estate planning issues with your spouse and then developing and implementing an appropriate estate plan for your blended family, you will be able to better ensure a more peaceful transition of your assets to those you love.
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Financially speaking ... How women differ from men Submitted by Kevin P. Tracy, financial adviser, Tracy Wealth Management, Port Angeles We all know men and women are different in some fundamental ways. But is this true when it comes to financial planning? In a word, yes. In the financial world, women often find themselves in very different circumstances than their male counterparts. Everyone wants financial security. Yet women often face financial headwinds that can affect their ability to achieve it. The good news is that women today have never been in a better position to achieve financial security for themselves and their families. More women than ever are successful professionals, business owners, entrepreneurs and knowledgeable investors.
Their economic clout is growing, and women’s impact on the traditional workplace is still unfolding positively as women earn college and graduate degrees in record numbers and seek to successfully integrate their work and home lives to provide for their families. So what financial course will you chart?
SOME KEY DIFFERENCES
On the path to financial security, it’s important for women to understand what they might be up against, financially speaking. Women have longer life expectancies. Women live an average of 4.8 years longer than men, according to National Center for Health Statistics. A longer life expectancy presents several financial challenges for women: • Women will need to stretch their retirement dollars further. • Women are more likely to need some
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type of longterm care and may have to face some of their health care needs alone. • Married women are likely to outlive their husbands, which means they could have ultimate responsibility for disposition of the marital estate. Women generally earn less and have fewer savings. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, within most occupational categories, women who work full-time, year-round, earn only 81 percent (on average) of what men earn. This wage gap can significantly impact women’s overall savings, Social Security retirement benefits and pensions. The dilemma is that while women generally earn less than men, they need those dollars to last longer due to a longer life expectancy. With smaller financial cushions, women are more vulnerable to unexpected economic obstacles, such as a job loss, divorce or single parenthood. According to U.S. Census Bureau statistics, women are more likely than men to be living in poverty throughout their lives. Women are more likely to take career breaks for caregiving. Women are much more likely than men to take time out of their careers to raise children and/or care for aging parents, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Sometimes this is by choice. But by moving in and out of the workforce, women face several significant financial implications:
• Lost income, employer-provided health insurance, retirement benefits and other employee benefits • Less savings • A potentially lower Social Security retirement benefit • Possibly a tougher time finding a job or a comparable job (in terms of pay and benefits) when reentering the workforce • Increased vulnerability in the event of divorce or death of a spouse In addition to stepping out of the workforce more frequently to care for others, women are more likely to try to balance work and family by working part-time, which results in less income, and by requesting flexible work schedules, which can impact their career advancement (and thus the bottom line) if an employer unfairly assumes that women’s caregiving responsibilities will come at the expense of dedication to their jobs. Women are more likely to be living on their own. Whether through choice, divorce or death of a spouse, more women are living on their own. This means they’ll need to take sole responsibility for protecting their income and making financial decisions. Women sometimes are more conservative investors. Whether they’re saving for a home, college, retirement or a trip around the world, women need their money to work hard for them.
>> DIFFERENCES, continued on 11
Charlene Erickson Financial Advisor Direct: (360) 683-4172 Charlene.Erickson@wellsfargo.com
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To learn more about how your local Wells Fargo Private Bank office can help you, contact our team at (360) 683-4172.
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Leave house to a nonprofit Jamie Maciejewski, executive director, Habitat for Humanity of East Jefferson County, Port Townsend
<< PRO, continued from 4 Acknowledge how they communicate with clients. You can do this by scheduling an in-person meeting, preferably at their office, to ask the following questions: • What is your approach to retirement planning? • How often will I have the opportunity to meet in person to make sure my plan can adjust as my life evolves? • What is the average length of your relationships with clients? • Will you offer options and help me compare risks, costs and benefits? • How will you communicate with me about my finances?
Can you leave your house to a nonprofit organization, such as Habitat for Humanity? Yes, you can as part of your estate plan. Here are three simple ways you can do that.
LAST WILL AND TESTAMENT
Your last will and testament may provide that your house goes to Habitat for Humanity or another organization after your lifetime. This is known as a bequest, or gift, which is completed during the probate of your estate. Your executor will sign a deed to put Habitat in title on the property. The title will be subject to any mortgages, liens or unpaid taxes that are on the property. You can also provide funds to Habitat in your will to pay those amounts to make sure the title is “free and clear” when Habitat receives your generous gift.
DONATE YOUR HOME
An alternative to making a gift to Habitat in your will is to donate your home during your lifetime while continuing to live there as long as you like. This is known as a “life estate” and is very useful and customary in estate planning. Usually, the donor who makes the gift and retains the right to live in the house is responsible for taxes, insurance and maintenance, but it is possible to make other arrangements acceptable to you and Habitat.
TRANSFER OF DEATH DEED
Another simple way to donate your home without probate is by a transfer on death deed under a state law that went into effect in 2014. In order to give your home to Habitat with this method, you must sign and record a deed that states upon death, title to your home passes to Habitat. You continue to own the property during your lifetime. Also during your lifetime, the transfer on death deed does not affect your eligibility to receive any form of public assistance nor create a legal interest for Habitat in your property.
What if you would like to avoid probate?
>> NONPROFITS, continued on 13
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Give retirement plans an annual tune-up A FRESH LOOK AT STRATEGY
Submitted by Casi J. Fors, financial adviser, Fors Financial Consulting, Port Angeles Conducting an annual review of your retirement goals and strategy is an ideal way to check that your plans for your financial future remain realistic and on track. With that in mind, taking the three easy steps outlined below will help you conduct your retirement tune-up.
REVIEW RETIREMENT GOALS
Your first step should be to review your retirement savings goals and assess whether anything significant has occurred during the past year that might affect either your outlook for retirement or your current strategies to prepare for it. For example, have you decided to change the date when you’ll retire? Or have you experienced any new milestones such as getting married, divorced or having a child? Any of these events may affect how much you will want to save to fund the retirement you envision.
Your portfolio’s specific mix of stocks, bonds and cash — known as your asset allocation — should complement your financial goals, risk tolerance and time horizon. Asset allocation does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. If you haven’t taken a fresh look at your investments in a while, don’t assume that your old asset allocation is still appropriate for your current needs. Even if your personal outlook hasn’t changed, keep in mind that uneven returns provided by different investments may have caused your portfolio to shift from your intended asset allocation. If your asset allocation needs to be rebalanced, now may be the time for action.
CONSIDER SAVING MORE
None of us know what the future may hold. A good way to improve the odds that you have saved enough for retirement is to save more, no matter how prepared you may already be. If you have not already done so, consider
FORS FINANCIAL CONSULTING
Conducting a retirement tune-up is always a great idea, but don’t forget to consult with your financial advisor to discuss what else you can do to help achieve retirement security. Consult Casi Fors, an investment professional, at Fors Financial Consulting, 360457-6116.
Show you care. Pre-plan today. “The death of a loved one need not create a financial burden.” Cremation
Casi J. Fors, AIF 1001 E. FRONT ST, PORT ANGELES 360-457-6116 • firstname.lastname@example.org
“Live Life Well Planned”
Port Angeles Sequim Port Townsend
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Securities offered though LPL Financial, Member FINRA/SIPC. Investment advice offered through Financial Advocates Investment Management, DBA Fors Financial Consulting, a Registered Investment Advisor and separate entity from LPL Financial.
funding an IRA. For the 2015 tax year, you can contribute a maximum of $5,500, and those ages 50 and older can make an additional catch-up contribution of $1,000. These limits are set annually by the IRS. More information can be obtained at www. irs.gov.
Peninsula Daily News/Sequim Gazette
Women’s money needs to work hard
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entrepreneurial ventures and/or ways to grow your business. Seek help to balance work and family. If you have children and work outside the home, investigate and negotiate flexible work arrangements that may allow you to keep working and make sure your spouse is equally invested in household and child-related responsibilities. << DIFFERENCES, continued from 8 If you stay at home to care for children, keep your skills upto-date to the extent possible in case you return to the workforce Sometimes, though, women tend to be more conservative and stay involved in household financial decision-making. investors than men, which means their savings might not be If you’re caring for aging parents, ask adult siblings or on track to meet their financial goals. family members for help and seek outside services and supWomen need to protect their assets. port groups that can offer you a respite and help you cope As women continue to earn money, become the main breadwinners for their families and run their own businesses, with stress. Protect your assets. it’s vital that they take steps to protect their assets, both Identify potential risk exposure and implement strategies personal and business. to reduce that exposure. Without an asset protection plan, a woman’s wealth is vulFor example, life and disability insurance is vital to protect nerable to taxes, lawsuits, accidents and other financial risks your ability to earn an income and/or care for your family in that are part of everyday life. the event of disability or death. But women may be too busy handling their day-to-day reIn some cases, more sophisticated strategies, such as other sponsibilities to take the time to implement an appropriate plan. legal entities or trusts, may be needed. Create an estate plan. STEPS WOMEN CAN TAKE To ensure that your personal and financial wishes will be In the past, women may have taken a less active role in carried out in the event of your incapacity or death, consider household financial decision making. executing basic estate planning documents, such as a will, But, for many, those days are over. Today, women have more financial responsibility for them- trust, durable power of attorney and health-care proxy. selves and their families. So it’s critical that women know A FINANCIAL PROFESSIONAL CAN HELP how to save, invest and plan for the future. Women are the key to their own financial futures; it’s Here are some things women can do: critical that women educate themselves about finances and be Take control of your money. able to make financial decisions. Create a budget, manage debt and credit wisely, set and Yet the world of financial planning isn’t always easy or prioritize financial goals and implement a savings and investconvenient. ment strategy to meet those goals. In many cases, women can benefit greatly from working Become a knowledgeable investor. with a financial professional who can help them understand Learn basic investing concepts, such as asset classes, risk their options and implement plans designed to provide tolerance, time horizon, diversification, inflation, the role of women and their families with financially secure lives. various financial vehicles like 401(k)s and IRAs, and the role of income, growth and safety investments in a portfolio. Look for investing opportunities in the purchasing decisions you make every day. Have patience, be willing to ask questions, admit mistakes and seek help when necessary. Plan for retirement. Save as much as you can for retirement. Estimate how much money you’ll need in retirement and how much you can expect from your savings, Social Security eBay Community ID gwensswallowsnest and/or an employer pension. Understand how your Social Security benefit amount will change depending on the age you retire and also how years spent out of the workforce might affect the amount you receive. At retirement, make sure you understand your retirement plan distribution options and review your portfolio regularly. Also, factor the cost of health care (including longterm care) into your retirement planning and understand the basic rules of Medicare. Advocate for yourself in the workplace. Have confidence in your work ability and advocate for Office 360-681-8909 your worth in the workplace by researching salary ranges, negotiating your starting salary, seeking highly visible job asCell 360-775-5803 signments, networking and asking for raises and promotions. email@example.com In addition, keep an eye out for new career opportunities,
SEQUIM - SUNLAND
Dollie Sparks 360.683.6880 • 360.582.7361 firstname.lastname@example.org • sunland.withwre.com
Peninsula Daily News/Sequim Gazette
How much do they really earn? 43 percent can’t identify their partner’s salary NewsUSA So much for thinking we know everything that matters about our spouse or significant other — at least, it seems, when it comes to money. According to Fidelity Investments’ new “2015 Couples Retirement Study,” while the overwhelming majority of couples surveyed said they communicate “exceptionally well” or “very well” about financial matters, a whopping 43 percent couldn’t correctly identify how much their partner earned — up 16 percent from the last time the question was asked two years ago. And 10 percent of those in the dark were off by $25,000 when they
apparently tried guessing. “We know couples don’t always agree when it comes to money, but we were surprised how many missed the mark on the question of their partner’s salary,” said John Sweeney, Fidelity’s executive vice president of retirement and investing strategies. “If gaps exist around basic questions like that, couples might have other opportunities for improvement on the financial front, including how and where to retire and later-in-life issues like eldercare and estate planning.” Feeling a bit smug because you know how much your other half makes right down to the last decimal point? Then go ahead — if you dare — and try asking him or her these questions to see how you stack up: • How much do we need to save to maintain our current lifestyle in retirement? (The survey results: 48 percent had “no idea,” and another 47 percent —
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Stephen C. Moriarty David H. Neupert Patrick M. Irwin
particularly Baby Boomers closest to retirement — disagreed on a figure.) • How much can we expect in Social Security benefits to help complement what we’ve saved independently? (The survey results: 60 percent of all couples and 49 percent of Boomers drew a complete blank, even though the government regularly mails the info out.) • If you add up all our investible assets — such as bank accounts, mutual funds, retirement accounts and stocks and bonds — what’s the grand total? (Survey results: 36 percent of couples couldn’t agree.) • Traveling the world or staying put?
(Survey results: One in three gave conflicting visions of their expected post-retirement lifestyle.) There are additional interactive “Couples Quiz” questions on Fidelity’s website (fidelity.com/couplesquiz) that you might want to try, including a fun one about what you’d do if your favorite store was having a blow-out sale. Answering them produces your “Financial Personality,” and you’re encouraged to share the results with your partner and learn how to navigate the retirement process together. A word of advice: While it pays to be honest, think long and hard about how badly you want to hit that sale.
Simon Barnhart Christopher J. Riffle Joshua W. Fox
403 S. Peabody St. • Port Angeles, WA 98362
www.plattirwin.com Offices in Port Angeles, Sequim & Port Townsend
Your estate estate plan Your plan can give can give a child a child of a lifetime a lifetime of happy memories at home. happy memories at home. Learn How: (360) 379-2827 • email@example.com
Peninsula Daily News/Sequim Gazette
Planning ahead for estate sale eases task You can use colored stickers to organize this process. Don’t concern yourself with donations or Whether due to the loss of a loved one, trash at this point. health/financial issues or for wanting to simThe company that conducts your sale can plify your lifestyle, knowing how to proceed best determine which items are saleable. with paring down your possessions can be a • Decide on a firm time line in which to daunting process. complete your move. Most communities have companies who Investigate which companies will best conduct estate sales and can also organize meet your needs, such as packing, moving, your move. household sale, cleaning and real estate agent, The following is a short list of suggestions making sure that they are bonded, licensed to get you started with planning an estate and/or insured. sale to help your transition move forward • Don’t wait to start this process until the situation is forced upon you. smoothly and efficiently: All tasks are more manageable when taken • Determine which items are family heirlooms or have sentimental value then talk on a little at a time. For more information on planning an with family members to see who might have estate sale, phone Gwen Tillotson at 360an interest. • Designate all items which will be moved. 681-8909.
Gwen Tillotson, Swallow’s Nest Antiques and Estate Sales, Sequim
Revocation of deed an option If you change your mind about making the gift or decide to sell your home, you can revoke the transfer on death deed by a written document, also recorded with the county auditor. These are just three examples of easy ways you can leave your house to Habitat or another nonprofit organization. To see if one of these options is right for you, contact your CPA, financial planner or estate planning attorney. They can provide you with specific advice on tax consequences and explore with you additional ways to express your generous support of Habitat. Jamie Maciejewski is executive director of Habitat for Humanity of East Jefferson County; contact her at 360-379-2827. In Clallam County, Cyndi Hueth is executive director of Habitat for Humanity; contact her at 360-681-6780.
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Peninsula Daily News/Sequim Gazette
Plan for your companion animal’s future explaining how to care for your pets. Does the pet have a medical condition, special diet, exercise routine or behavioral Our pets are important members of our habits? family, and they depend on us to take care of Include their medical history and your all their needs. veterinarian’s name and number. Have you considered what will happen to Be sure to tell your family and friends them if you are no longer able to provide for where these instructions are kept. them due to death or disability? It is of vital importance to set up a fund Have a plan in place that will give you for your pets that will cover food, supplies, peace of mind knowing your loved compan- medical and dental care, grooming, etc. ions will always be cared for. Consider your current expenses for all Identify caregivers, people who are willtheir care and their life expectancy. ing to responsibly care for your pets after It’s best to guarantee your wishes are folan emergency, as well as those willing to lowed by making formal arrangements with adopt your pet should you die or become an attorney and drawing up a will or trust or incapacitated. other documents that specify the details of Carefully choose people you trust who will care. do what is in their best interest, including Carry an I.D. card in your wallet listing the appropriate veterinary treatment. number, names and types of animals in your Keeping in mind that people’s life home, your vet and designated caregiver’s situations change, also identify an alternate name and phone number. caregiver. Also post emergency pet contact informa- with a brief description of the pet, location of pet food and meds, veterinarian and careMake sure that they understand and are tion in an easily seen spot in your home. giver name and number. willing to accept this critical responsibility. List your name and phone numbers, the Taking the time now to follow these Write down step-by-step instructions number and type of animals in your home guidelines will help to ensure that your loved companion animals will receive the care you
Danette Grady, Peninsula Friends of Animals, Port Angeles
want for them for the remainder of their lives. For more information, phone Danette Grady at Peninsula Friends of Animals at 360452-0414. A portion of this material has been reprinted with permission of 2nd Chance 4 Pets.
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Peninsula Daily News/Sequim Gazette
Finding ways to be remembered Submitted by United Way of Clallam County How will you be remembered? What matters to you? Do you want to see results from your charitable gifts while you are alive, or leave a gift in your will? Can you provide for your heirs and also leave a portion of your estate to a cause you care about? The Clallam Community Foundation is a collection of separate funds established to provide health and human services to residents of Clallam County. The foundation is a tool to arrange gifts supporting a particular issue or agency you are passionate about. Even a modest bequest or a small gift can make a difference. You might choose to make annual distributions to nonprofit organizations or provide college scholarships. The foundation encompasses three types of funds: United Way funds, named funds and partner organization funds. Distributions are made from earnings of each fund, while the principal is preserved as a permanent endowment.
UNITED WAY FUNDS
Distributions from United Way funds in the foundation are determined annually by the United Way Board of Directors. Earnings from the undesignated fund are allocated among
the partner agencies who receive year-round funding from United Way or used as grants to help agencies identify new sources of support. Earnings from the McCool Fund are dedicated to early learning, funding Great Beginnings projects to help children and families be ready for school. The Orville Ninke Fund was established to assist lowincome seniors with unmet needs — from basic utility bills to home repairs that will enable older folks to remain in their homes.
Named funds are created by individuals or families to honor a loved one and continue a legacy of giving. United Way works with representatives of the fund to make distributions in line with the donor’s wishes. A named fund can be directed toward a general purpose, such as services for youth, or toward a specific list of agencies. Many of the foundation’s named funds award scholarships to graduates of Clallam County high schools.
nent endowment to ensure a continued source of revenue to further their missions in support of Clallam County residents. United Way welcomes donations to the Community Foundation for the benefit of any of these organizations: • Clallam County Literacy Council • Dungeness Valley Health & Wellness Clinic • First Step Family Support Center • Juan de Fuca Festival of the Arts • North Olympic Library Foundation • North Olympic Timber Action Committee • Olympic Peninsula YMCA • Peninsula Behavioral Health • Port Angeles Food Bank • St. Andrew’s Place Assisted Living • Volunteers in Medicine of the Olympics Clinic
WHAT WILL YOUR LEGACY BE?
There are many ways to create or contribute to an endowment fund. Your estate attorney, financial planner or insurance agent can help you determine which type of legacy gift best fits PARTNER ORGANIZATIONS your wishes and needs. Eleven Clallam County nonprofit organizations have estabFor more information on setting up a fund or making a lished funds within the Clallam Community Foundation. contribution to an existing fund, contact United Way at 360These organizations have committed to creating a perma- 457-3011 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
United Way The Clallam Community Foundation is a collection of separate funds established by individuals, families and charitable organizations – a community of donors. What will your legacy be? We can help you explore how to create your own lasting investment in the future of Clallam County and its citizens. It’s easier than you might think to create a fund to support the causes you care about. The Clallam Community Foundation also accepts donations to any of our existing funds.
In 2014 eight grants and 28 scholarships were distributed totaling $64,200 from the following funds: Bright Haygood Copsey Scholarship Fund Karen Byrd Memorial Scholarship Fund Hull Family Fund Carol Munro Memorial Fund Mac & Phyllis Munro Memorial Scholarship Fund Mac Ruddell Community Fund Michael Sindars Scholarship Fund Whatton Family Fund
For more information on the Clallam Community Foundation, contact United Way of Clallam County PO Box 937, Port Angeles WA 98362 360-457-3011 email@example.com www.unitedwayclallam.org/clallam-community-foundation
United Way of Clallam County Funds Distributions from United Way Funds are determined by the United Way Board of Directors. 2014 Distributions included: • $20,000 from the Undesignated Funds to United Way’s annual fund drive • $2,200 from the Undesignated Funds to help agencies expand their capacity through grant writing • $50,000 from the McCool Fund to Early Learning grants • $16,000 from the Orville Ninke Fund to assist Clallam County Seniors with urgent needs Named Funds Created by individuals or families to honor a loved one, representatives of the donor may recommend grants to charitable organizations and/or award scholarships to Clallam County students.
PENINSULA DAILY NEWS/SEQUIM GAZETTE
OLYMPIC MEDICAL CENTER FOUNDATION
Help Sustain the Future
of Health Care in Our Community
Olympic Medical Center provides a range of facilities and services that is nearly unprecedented in a medical center of its size. It is a pillar of the quality of life that sustains our region and a source of community pride. Small wonder that since 1990, the community has provided $4.6 million to the hospital through the OMC Foundation and its giving programs. And since 2006, it has given almost $2.6 million. The money raised through the events and the generous donations by the community stays on the
Peninsula, benefiting local citizens by providing state of the art equipment, patient services and the latest training and education. By continuing to provide quality health care, Olympic Medical Center is able to keep patients from having to travel outside the area for treatment. This not only saves patients time and money, but also relieves the stress of traveling during what could already be a traumatic time. There are several ways in which you can help continue this tremendous record.
The Foundation supports many styles of giving preferences and offers abundant opportunities to support local health care.
■• Outright Gifts of Cash ■• Gifts by Will or Bequest
Gifts in Memoriam Life Insurance
■• Deferred Gifts:
Life Income Plans
There are so many ways to support quality health care in our community. Whatever your preference, Olympic Medical Center Foundation will guide you through your choices to arrive at the best one for you, your family, your business or your estate. The mission of OMCF is to improve the lives of patients at Olympic Medical Center. 5A1441917
Learn more at www.omhf.org or call the OMCF office at 360-417-7144.