All retirees should understand the process of starting Medicare benefits at 65, the required minimum distributions you'll need to take from your retirement accounts, and how the Social Security earnings test works. If none of the above applies to you, you'll need to take about 10 minutes and sign up for Medicare on the Social Security Administration's website (or you can apply at your local Social Security office or over the phone). You might need to start taking larger withdrawals from your retirement accounts If you don't need the money in your retirement accounts, it may seem like a good idea to leave it alone or just withdraw a little bit. This rule applies to pre-tax retirement accounts, such as traditional IRAs and most 401(k), 403(b), and 457 accounts. Basically, the RMD rule says that after you reach 70 1/2 years of age, you need to start withdrawing at least a certain amount of money from your account(s) each year. You have until Dec. 31 each year to satisfy your RMD requirement, with the exception of the year you turn 70 1/2, in which case you have until March 1 of the following year. This isn't true, but the Social Security "earnings test" can result in some or all of your benefits being withheld if you haven't yet reached full retirement age. Specifically, in the eyes of the Social Security Administration, beneficiaries who work are divided into three categories: If you will reach full retirement age after 2017, $1 of your benefits will be withheld for every $2 you earn in excess of $16,920 ($1,410 per month). If you will reach full retirement age during 2017, $1 of your benefits will be withheld for every $3 you earn in excess of $44,880 ($3,740 per month). You can work and earn as much as you'd like, and you'll still collect your full Social Security retirement benefit.
Financial exploitation is an issue that demands financial institutions’ attention. Banks lose an estimated $1 billion annually and rising in deposits. Thieves especially target older Americans (those over 50), with good reason – these customers own two-thirds of all bank deposits. An estimated 1 in 5 older Americans are victims of financial exploitation.
Despite these statistics, many financial institutions may not immediately see the business case for fighting exploitation. Executives and managers may believe that the additional training, manpower, and corporate focus on this issue may not deliver the return on investment that other initiatives can provide. Some may even feel that customers are responsible for protecting themselves from scams and other forms of exploitation.
As we celebrate the 12th anniversary of World Elder Abuse Awareness Day we applaud the leadership of many financial institutions that have voluntarily developed simple yet effective solutions to fight exploitation. Financial institutions like First Financial of Texas, Suncoast Credit Union, Barclays UK, Lloyds of London, and Bank of American Fork to…