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Wednesday, December 18, 2013

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Insurance & Investments for Seniors

Seniors Urged to Consider Free Tax Software from Free File Alliance as Deadline Nears

Taxpayers with earnings of $57,000 or less can visit for free software for preparing, filing tax return

April 8, 2013 – With Americans experiencing the shortest tax season on record, the Free File Alliance, a nonprofit coalition of industry-leading tax software companies partnered with the IRS, today reminded taxpayers that free, brand-name tax software is available at the IRS website. Read more... 

Caregiver & Elder Care News

Women Will See Long-Term Care Rates Increased by Major Insurer

Women's premiums may increase by 20 to 40 percent under the new pricing policy: they live longer than men

By Michelle Andrews, KHN, Insuring Your Health

Kaiser Health News PhotoFeb. 27, 2013 - Starting next year, the Affordable Care Act will largely prohibit insurers who sell individual and small-group health policies from charging women higher premiums than men for the same coverage. Long-term-care insurance, however, isn't bound by that law, and the country's largest provider of such coverage has announced it will begin setting its prices based on sex this spring. Read more...

Social Security News

Lack of Social Security Awareness Could Be Costing Retirees Thousands of Dollars

Half collecting or planning to collect benefit before full retirement age; more than half not knowledgeable about maximizing benefits; 83% concerned about program

Oct. 31, 2012 – Many older retired Americans do not understand key issues surrounding Social Security, says the BMO Retirement Institute. Consequently, they are losing out on a significant amount of money that could be used to fund their retirement. Read more...

Insurance & Investments for Seniors

Putting The 'Care' Into Long-Term Care Insurance - Some States Taking Action

Some insurance companies are slow to pay and have been known to deny payments completely

By Kristian Foden-Vencil, Oregon Public Broadcasting

Oct. 17, 2012 - Long-term care insurance is the financial equivalent of doing push-ups -- it's good for you, but not too much fun. As a result, not many people buy long-term care insurance, which pays for care when they get too old or sick to take care of their basic needs like cooking or bathing. Read more...

Often Unnoticed In Nursing Home Papers Is Arbitration Agreement You May Not Want to Sign

Anxious seniors or their caregivers often sign every document that's put in front of them, perhaps only glancing at the content

By Michelle Andrews

Sept. 18, 2012 - When Paul Ormond signed John Mitchell into a nursing home in Dennis, Mass., in June, he was handed a few dozen pages of admission papers. Ormond, Mitchell's legal guardian and an old friend, signed wherever the director of admissions told him to. Read more...

Features for Senior Citizens

AARP’s New ‘Work Reimagined’ to Help Older Workers Find Jobs

Online program linked with professional job site, Linkedin

Aug. 1, 2012 – A new online effort to connect older workers with employers seeking these experienced workers was announced today by AARP. Work Reimagined will work in coordination with the professional networking site, LinkedIn, to emphasize assistance for older professional seeking a new or more satisfying job opportunity. Read more...

Features for Senior Citizens Has Helped 50 Million in U.S. Since Launch 10-Years Ago

Benefit Finder allows citizens to quickly find benefits they may be eligible to receive out of over 1,000 Federally-funded benefit and assistance programs

April 18, 2012 - Over 50 million U.S. citizens – many of them senior citizens - have turned to for life-altering government assistance information since its launch in 2002, according to a statement in the monthly eNewsletter, Compass, of the government website on its 10th anniversary. Read more...

Senior Citizen Alerts

Millions of Senior Citizens Eligible for IRS Free File Program: Preparation, E-Filing

100 million Americans are eligible to access free online tax software at IRS web site

April 13, 2012 – Many senior citizens are certainly among the millions of Americans that should consider the IRS Free File program before the April 17 tax filing deadline. IRS Free File provides free online tax software for all Americans with a 2011 Adjusted Gross Income of $57,000 or less. Read more...

Medicare News

Say What? Most Insurance Covers Little of the Cost of Hearing Aids

Medicare generally doesn't pay anything, though hearing loss is a common concern among senior citizens - Medicare does cover surgery to install a cochlear implant

By Michelle Andrews, Kaiser Health News

small hearing aid has big price not covered by MedicareApril 10, 2012 - Only a quarter of the 35 million U.S. adults who could benefit from hearing aids actually get them, and one of the main reasons is money. A hearing aid typically costs a few thousand dollars, sometimes much more, and most insurance plans don’t cover that. Medicare generally doesn't pay anything, though hearing loss is a common concern among its beneficiaries. Faced with a hefty expense, many people decide that hearing what’s going on around them is a luxury they can’t afford. Read more...

Social Security News

AARP Free Webinar to Explain Social Security Impact on Income Taxes

To teach the basics about how Social Security can impact individual income taxes

Feb. 29, 2012 - With the April 17 tax filing deadline just around the corner, AARP is providing tips for seniors looking to protect their financial assets through better retirement planning. It will provide a free online webinar focusing on how Social Security can impact your income tax bill. Read more...

Insurance & Investments for Seniors

Private Health Insurance Plans Must Eliminate Technical, Confusing Wording

Senior citizens may see help in plans for Medicare Advantage, prescription drugs, supplemental health and special needs outside Medicare

Feb. 9, 2012 - People in the market for health insurance will soon have clear, understandable and straightforward information on what health plans will cover, what limitations or conditions will apply, and what they will pay for services thanks to the Affordable Care Act – the “Obamacare” health reform law – according to final regulations published today. Read more...

Money, Insurance & Investments for Seniors

KHN Blog: Short Takes On News & Events

Seeking The Best Place For Long-Term Care? Head North

Percent of nursing home residents in physical restraints under 1% in Kansas, nearly 8% in California

By Phil Galewitz, Kaiser Health News

Sept. 8, 2011 - If you think there’s a demand now for long-term care services, just wait 20 years. By the time baby boomers hit their 70s and 80s, there will be a huge surge in need. Read more...

Retirement News

Retirees, Pre-Retirees Increasingly Concerned About Financial Security, Paying for Healthcare

More retirees reporting they have already cut back on spending and moved assets to increasingly conservative investments

May 16, 2011 – Senior citizens are living longer and spending more time in retirement than every before, but this is causing many to worry they will out last their savings. About 40 percent of retirees and half of those about to retire, say this anxiety has grown worse with the sluggish economy. The good news is many are taking action to protect what they have, says a new report from the Society of Actuaries (SOA). Read more...

Caregiver & Elder Care News

Nursing Home Cost Continues Climb; Jumps 3.4% to $77,745 a Year for Private Room

Genworth Study helps senior citizens and caregivers compare local costs; assisted living also climbing but home health care flat

May 10, 2011 – The cost of a private room in a nursing home jumped 3.4 percent in the last year to a staggering $77,745 a year, according to Genworth’s 2011 Cost of Care Survey. Not far behind is a 2.4 percent jump in the cost assisted living facilities, which is $39,135 a year. The bright light was on home health care, which most senior citizens prefer, that held steady. Read more, see video...

Money, Insurance & Investments for Seniors

Older Americans Face Climbing Long-Term Care Cost in Nursing Homes, Assisted Living

Private room in nursing home now averages $85,775 per year; home health aide cost shows smallest increase

April 20, 2011 – Senior citizens and baby boomers are facing a continued increase in the cost of long-term care (LTC) in the U.S., although the increase this year is less than cost increases for other goods and services. Still, the John Hancock survey says the annual cost of a private room in a nursing home has climbed to $85,775. Read more...

Caregiver & Elder Care News

One in Six Senior Citizens Live in Poverty, NCOA Offers to Help Build Economic Security

With first Boomers turning 65, and economy still recovering, the number of older Americans struggling to make ends meet likely to continue to grow

Jan. 24, 2011 - One in six older Americans lives below the federal poverty line, according to a new government analysis which almost doubles the number of very poor seniors compared to the standard estimate. The National Council on Aging has launched a pilot program to help with a personal approach to financial counseling, education, and benefits coordination. Read more...

Money, Insurance & Investments for Seniors

Few Senior Citizens Have Long-Term Care Insurance, New Healthcare Law May Help

Community Living Assistance Services and Support Act (CLASS Act) helps people with impairments pay for nonmedical services to stay in their homes; also can cover nursing home care

By Michelle Andrews, Kaiser Health News

Click to more columns by Michelle AndrewsDec. 15, 2010 - People don't like to think about what will happen if they become too ill or infirm to manage on their own. Experts say that partly explains why sales of long-term-care insurance policies are so anemic; only about 10 percent of seniors have such coverage. Read more...

MetLife Says It Will Stop Selling Long-Term Care Insurance Due to Industry Problems

Company committed to exploring potential solutions, including combining LTCI with other products

Nov. 11, 2010 –MetLife today announced that it will discontinue the sale of new Long-Term Care Insurance (LTCI), following an “extensive review” of its LTCI business. The insurance company well identified with insurance for senior citizens and the nation’s largest life insurer is following an industry trend. Read more...

Government-Run Long-Term Care Insurance Program Makes Its Debut In Health Reform Bill

Older population needing long-term care is large and growing. An estimated 10 million have enough trouble performing acts of daily living - like bathing, dressing and eating - that they require assistance

April 5, 2010 – One of the key provisions of the new health reform bill was mostly drowned out by all the shouting and screaming as the bill moved through the legislative process. This bill makes the first attempt ever to solve a mushrooming problem facing millions of senior citizens in the U.S. – long-term health care. did report on this (see link in box for related stories). Following is a new report by NPR. Read more...

Money, Insurance & Investments for Seniors

Democrats on Senate Aging Committee Back  New Bill to Protect Senior Citizens from Fraud

Financial regulation bill includes language to protect against unscrupulous financial advisors

March 16, 2010 – Four Democrats on the Senate’s Special Committee on Aging came together yesterday to support a provision included in the Restoring American Financial Stability Act that they say will protect older Americans from fraud at the hands of unscrupulous financial advisors. Speaking out were senators Herb Kohl (WI), Bob Casey (PA), Claire McCaskill (MO), and Al Franken (MN). Read more...

Free Legal Guide for the Seriously Ill Written by American Bar’s Commission on Law and Aging

Guide for caretakers and those who are ill was commissioned by the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization

Dec. 29, 2009 – Knowing how to get personal financial and legal affairs in order is a consideration every senior citizens should consider – before the onset of a serious illness or injury, which can affect much more than a person’s health. This information is often vitally important not only to the affected individual, but to his or her loved ones as well. Read more...

Even Older Americans Get Failing Grade on Their Knowledge About Long-Term Care

MetLife survey finds an average score of just 52% among respondents age 40 to 70

Oct. 28, 2009 - Older Americans are really not very knowledgeable about long-term care, according to a survey that questioned people age 40 to 70. The MetLife Long-Term Care IQ Survey, found only 21 percent achieved a score of 70 percent or higher. Read more...

Nursing Home Costs Now Pressing $80,000 a Year Finds MetLife Market Survey

Survey finds ‘notable increases’ for nursing homes, assisted living, day services and home care

Oct. 28, 2009 - Price rollbacks throughout the U.S. economy during the past year did not apply to long-term care service providers, according to the 2009 MetLife Market Survey of Nursing Home, Assisted Living, Adult Day Services, and Home Care Costs. Private room nursing home rates rose 3.3% to $219 per day or $79,935 per year, while assisted living also rose 3.3% on average to $3,131 per month. Home health care aides now cost an average of $21 per hour, a 5% increase; adult day services run $67 per day, a 4.7% increase. Read more...

Senior Citizen Politics

Powerful Congressional Leaders Offer New Legislation to Protect Older Workers

Judiciary Committee opens hearing on how ‘bare majority’ of Supreme Court has made it more difficult to prove age discrimination in workplace

Oct. 7, 2009 – Older workers received good news yesterday of a Congressional challenge to a Supreme Court decision in June of this year that many say encourages age discrimination in the workplace. Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Congressman George Miller (D-CA), introduced legislation they say restores vital civil rights protections for older workers in the face of the Supreme Court’s decision. Read more...

Senior Citizens See Largest Gain in Credit Card Debt as Recession, Medical Costs Take Toll

New survey finds credit card debt climbing due to dwindling savings, stagnant wages, medical debt

July 29, 2009 – A survey released yesterday indicates senior citizens may be experiencing by far the worst financial pressures of the recession that began in 2008. The report examined the change in credit card debt in the U.S. among low- and middle-income households and found a dramatic increase – 26 percent - in the amount owed by older Americans. Read more...

Jobs Scarce for Oldest Workers; Consider Entry-Level, Internships, Moving, Self-Employment

CareerBuilder survey finds 63% age 55 and older laid off in the last 12 months have applied for jobs below the level at which they were previously employed

July 22, 2009 - Mature workers, a critical workforce segment, has been hit particularly hard by the mass job losses in the market, according to CareerBuilder. Twenty-eight percent of workers age 55 and older who were laid off in the last 12 months found new jobs, the lowest of all age groups. This compares to 71 percent of those ages 25 to 34. Read more...

Senior Citizens Skipping Medicine and Food Due to Recessions, Says Senior League Survey

News release on study says eight in ten seniors cut food budgets

July 22, 2009 - The Senior Citizens League (TSCL) today says they have completed a new survey that has found senior citizens are being forced to make drastic cuts to their medical and food budgets due to the recession. Read more...

Age Discrimination Hearing Draws Support for More Regulatory, Legislative Action

Older workers who lose their jobs may have more difficulty finding another job than their younger counterparts: EEOC hearing yesterday

July 16, 2009 - The effect on older workers of widespread layoffs, threats to employee benefits, and controversial recent court decisions were major topics at a hearing yesterday by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) that focused on the “devastating impact” of age discrimination. Read more...

Growing Trend of Contracting with Family to Provide Long-Term Care for Elderly

New contracts adding legal twist to family health care, law professor finds

By Jan Dennis, Business & Law Editor
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign News Bureau

May 28, 2009 - Financial contracts to care for sick or aging relatives – nearly unthinkable just a decade ago – are drawing new interest as everyday Americans wrestle with the time and expense of providing long-term health care, a University of Illinois legal expert says. Read more...

About Life Settlements for Senior Citizens: $250,000 Could be Sitting in Your Desk Drawer

Editor's Note: An investigation of the booming life settlement industry for the Senate Special Committee on Aging recently found unintended consequences for consumers, sales and marketing abuses, and insurance fraud, all exacerbated by the high commissions earned by life settlement brokers. Here John Yaker, president of Quantum Life Settlements, presents for readers of the positive side of these transactions.

By John Yaker

May 18, 2009 - Are you about to throw $250,000 or more away? If you have a life insurance policy you’re about to surrender back to your provider or, worse, allow to lapse, you may very well be losing a significant amount of money. Read more...

Older Workers Doing Better Than Younger Americans as Unemployment Skyrockets

Men and women age 55 and older have lowest unemployment; women doing better than men

April 3, 2009 – Unemployment continues to grow, according to the latest statistics from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, but older Americans appear to be doing much better at holding on to their jobs than are younger workers. Read more...

Geriatric Psychiatrist Sees Anxiety Gripping Senior Citizens in Economic Crisis

Drum beat of bad economic news and promises of worse to come can be stressful; he offers ideas on how to deal with it

Nov. 25, 2008 - For older adults who have lived through the Great Depression, news stories comparing present circumstances to the harsh realities of food lines, few jobs, and extreme poverty of the 1930’s may be panic-producing. Add that to the fact that an economic crisis disproportionately affects older adults who need access to retirement funds, and it’s not surprising that seniors are feeling anxious. Read more...

Private Room Rate in Nursing Homes Steady in 2008; Semi-Private, Assisted Living Climb

MetLife Mature Market Institute report gives nursing home, assisted living rates for U.S. states, key cities

Nov. 4, 2008 - Average rates for a private room in a nursing home remained basically unchanged nationally from 2007, while semi-private rates increased 1.1%, from $189 daily or $68,985 annually in 2007, to $191 daily or $69,715 annually in 2008, according to the 2008 MetLife Market Survey of Nursing Home & Assisted Living Costs released at the end of October. Read more...

Long-Term Care Lawyer Says Conseco Insurance Puts Seniors at Financial Risk

Says moving LTC policies into a Trust that could financial ruin senior citizens

Sept. 25, 2008 - Conseco, an Indiana based insurance company, without notice to policyholders has decided to move 144,000 Long-Term Care policies into a Trust that could financial ruin senior citizens, according to Frank N. Darras, who claims to be the nation's leading disability and Long-Term Care insurance lawyer. Read more...

Reverse Mortgage News for Seniors

Finances Taboo Topic for Senior Citizens and Their Children, Finds Reverse Mortgage Firm

Seniors considering reverse mortgages lowering their home values, new housing legislation helps older Americans, says reverse mortgage lender in other studies

Aug. 14, 2008 - Half of all senior citizens participating in a recent survey said that they have never had an in-depth conversation about their financial situation with their adult children, according to a survey for Golden Gateway Financial, a marketer of reverse mortgages to senior citizens. The company also recently released analysis showing seniors are lowering their home values and that the new federal housing legislation benefits seniors. Read more...

Six Tips on How to Reduce Long-Term Care Insurance Costs

Annual premiums vary by age, health, and type of policy but can run as high as $5,000 a year


June 30, 2008 - While long-term care insurance can be a good way to pay for a nursing home stay or a home health care worker, it doesn't come cheap. Annual premiums vary significantly, depending on your age, health, and the type of policy, but policies can run as high as $5,000 per year. You do not need to pay that much, however. Following are six tips to reduce your costs. Read more...

Today’s U.S. Senior Citizen Couple Needs $85,000 To Insure Long-Term Care Costs

50-year old Baby Boomer earning $50,000, providing four years of long-term care to a family member, could lose more than $140,000 in wages, retirement plans, and social security

June 27, 2008 – A U.S. couple that is 65 years old in 2008 will need $85,000 to insure against the expense of long-term care in the future, according to a new estimate by Fidelity Investments. Read more...

Seniors Face 'Soaring Costs' for Health Care, Other Needs with No End in Sight

“An age of uncertainty”

Seniors living on a fixed income face hard choices as costs soar for groceries, gas and medicine. No relief is in sight.

Chicago Tribune Reports retirees have accumulated more debt than ever

May 20, 2008 - The Chicago Tribune on Sunday examined how, "with soaring costs of prescription drugs, housing, gasoline and groceries, it is easy for seniors on fixed incomes to go over budget." Read more...

Elder Care News

Long-Term Care Costs Jump 25% Over 2004; Workforce Shortage Fuels Continued Climb

Genworth Survey finds average annual cost for a week in adult day health care facility is $15,236

April 30, 2008 - Not only has the cost of long-term care in U.S. nursing homes, assisted living facilities and in the home increased for the fifth consecutive year, but the nation faces an impending shortage of direct-care workers, further driving up long term care costs. Those are two of the key conclusions drawn from cost of care research by Genworth Financial (NYSE:GNW). Read more...

Senior Citizens Should Beware of Health Shock: It Can Drain Your Money

The later in life serious illness occurs, the more damage to a person’s finances

by Pam Frost Gorder, Ohio State University

April 10, 2008 - A new study underscores the need for seniors to maintain their health -- in order to maintain their wealth. Building on a 2003 study that found that healthy seniors are more likely to retain their savings, Ohio State University researchers have now discovered that the later in life a serious illness occurs, the more damage it does to a person’s finances. Read more...

Number of Senior Citizens in Workforce Rapidly Climbing, Says New Report

Report by Taskforce on the Aging of the American Workforce

Labor Force Participation Rates,





65 to 69


65 to 69

















Feb. 15, 2008 – Senior citizens face a number of financial challenges in the years ahead – out of control healthcare costs, Social Security payments not keeping pace with their inflation, increasing charges by Medicare, and more - and this appears to be forcing more seniors back into the workforce. A new report says the number of seniors working is expected to grow by 74% by 2014, with 2004 as the base. Read more...

Ten Reasons to Face Your Mortality and Create an Estate Plan Now

Must include two important instruments: a durable power of attorney and will

Dec. 3, 2007 - Knowing we will die is something that seems to distinguish humans from other living creatures, yet, no one likes to dwell on the prospect of death. This possibly explains why many postpone planning for their demise, which increases the risk that loved ones may not receive what the dying had intended. This is why estate planning is so important, according to, no matter how small your estate. Read more...

Buying Life Settlements Reached Value of $6.1 Billion in 2006

Trading in life insurance policies driven by investor demand, seniors needing cash

  A viatical or life settlement is the sale to a third party of an existing life insurance policy for more than its cash surrender value but less than its net death benefit. Regulatory usage of the terms “viatical settlement” and “life settlement” varies by state. Life Insurance Settlement Association  

Oct. 24, 2007 - From virtually no activity just 10 years ago, investment managers are today raising capital by the bushel and on a global scale to invest in the new asset of life settlements. The result is an increasing number and value of life insurance settlements being sold to meet growing capital demands, according to a new study by Conning Research and Consulting, Inc. Senior citizens in need of cash are hot targets for life settlement buyers. Read more...

SEC Opens Senior Summit Today to Fight Fraud of Older Americans

Agency also provides lots of helpful info on senior citizen Website

Sept. 10, 2007 - The Securities and Exchange Commission kicked off its second annual Senior Summit today, which is aimed at learning more about how regulators, community organizations, and others can increasingly coordinate efforts to protect older Americans from abusive sales practices and investment fraud. Read more...

States Urged to Adopt New Standards for Those Advising Senior Citizens on Investments

Senate aging committee chair will develop the new standards

Sept. 10, 2007 – Following last week’s hearing by the Senate’s Special Committee on Aging about the practices of financial investment advisers using questionable credentials to gain access to the retirement savings of senior citizens, Chairman Herb Kohl says he will develop legislation to provide uniform standards for accreditation as senior financial advisors. President of the Society of Certified Senior Advisors told the hearing that the title is being misused. Read more...

Dubious Credentials May Scam Seniors Out of Retirement Savings: Aging Committee

Senate aging committee looking at senior financial advisor titles

Aug. 31, 2007 – There seems to be reasonable doubt that some of the titles being used by people to show they are qualified to help senior citizens with their financial decisions are of little value. The chairman of the Senate’s aging committee will conduct a hearing on Wednesday, September 5, to examine some of the “questionable practices used by so-called financial investment specialists.” Read more...

Do You Need Long-Term Care Insurance? Ten Tips and Six Considerations

Nine million senior citizens will require long-term care at $74,806 a year

July 19, 2007 - With health care costs rising and longer life expectancies, funding long-term care needs is an increasing concern for millions of people, especially senior citizens. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, about 9 million Americans, now 65 or older, will require long-term care. HHS expects that number to rise by 25 percent - to 12 million - by 2020. Read more...

Senior Citizen Alerts

Senior Citizen Investors Being Fooled by Titles Easily Obtained: New York Times

Fourth article in series by New York Times on how companies, people are trying to profit on wealthy elderly in America

July 9, 2007 – Every senior citizen that has money invested, or is considering investment, needs to read an article in the New York Times online. The primary warning in this article is that seniors should not be fooled by fancy sounding titles, like “Certified Senior Adviser.” Many are easily obtained by people who want to take advantage of the elderly in America, who own $15 trillion in assets. Read more...

Senior Citizen Alerts

Many Senior Citizens May Not Know What Is NOT Covered by Homeowners Insurance

Survey shows lack of awareness among consumers when it comes to their homeowners policies

June 13, 2007 - A large percentage of U.S. homeowners mistakenly believe that standard homeowners insurance protects them from a wide array of perils, according to new research by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). In fact, typical property and liability policies don’t cover home damage from floods, earthquakes, water line breaks, termites, mold and several other perils, large and small. Read more...

Estate Tax Exemption Fixed at $3.5 Million by Congress

House and Senate to allow $7 million per couple, with top tax of 45%

May 20, 2007 – reports today that the House and Senate have approved a $2.9 trillion budget resolution that would keep the estate tax at where it will be in 2009 under the current law. This means that the per-person estate tax exemption would be $3.5 million ($7 million for a married couple) and the top tax rate would be 45 percent. Read more...

Features for Senior Citizens

Options to Broaden Role of Medicare in Long-Term Care Explored in Georgetown U. Study

By Ellen O’Brien, Health Policy Institute, Georgetown University

click to larger view.Feb. 18, 2007 - Medicare has contributed substantially to the wellbeing of the nation’s elderly and people with disabilities. Over the past four decades, Medicare has helped to improve the health of its beneficiaries and assure their financial wellbeing. But Medicare also has significant gaps. Key among them is the fact that Medicare does not pay for long-term care. Read more...

Senior Citizens Not Worried about Money as Nation's Savings Drop to New Low

Pew survey finds seniors have enough money and not worried

Click for larger view.January 26, 2007 - At a time when the personal savings rate in this country has fallen into negative territory for the first time in modern history, more than three-quarters (77%) of all Americans describe themselves as the kind of person who "always looks for ways to save money." But, don't include senior citizens, they are by far the least likely to ever worry about money. Read more...

Senior Citizens Selling Their Life Insurance has Become Big Business for Investors

New York Times starts series on investors profiting on seniors

December 21, 2006 – For several years there have been advertisers on offering to purchase life insurance policies from senior citizens, but, this industry has now reached new heights, according to a recent article in the New York Times. Today, investors are funding some older Americans to buy life insurance and then helping them find other investors willing to buy them at big profits for the original investors and the senior whose life has been insured. This transaction is also referred to as a "Life Settlement." Read more...

Long-Term Care Planning Assisted by New Website from Health & Human Services

Government's Clearinghouse for Long-Term Care Information online

December 15, 2006 – A new Website aimed at making it easier for consumers to get the information they need to plan for long-term care was announced today by Josefina G. Carbonell, Assistant Secretary for Aging in Health and Human Services. The National Clearinghouse for Long-Term Care Information site provides comprehensive information about long-term care planning, services and financing options, along with tools to help people begin the planning process. Read more...

State Efforts to Encourage Long-Term Care Insurance Purchases Falling Flat

States far from goal of half over 50 with private LTC insurance

click to more from ElderLawAnswers.comDecember 13, 2006 - State incentive programs to encourage the purchase of long-term care insurance have failed to generate the hoped-for increases in sales, a new study has found. Read more...

Survey of Home Owners on Shifting Values finds Vast Majority of Senior Citizens Have No Home Mortgage

Seniors, as usual, lest optimistic about values increasing

December 7, 2006 – As home prices cool, the Pew Research Center surveyed homeowners to learn more about the impact of shifting home values. The researchers discovered some not so surprising information about senior citizens – as usual, they tend to be the most pessimistic about values going up in the future. But, they also found one amazing statistic and another that is at least surprising. The amazing fact – 72 percent of those ages 65 and older have no home mortgage. And, surprisingly, more seniors own second homes than the average for all adults. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Estate Planning: The Four Basic Documents of Your Legacy

Estate planning can be difficult , confusing but 4 basic tools needed

By Robert Valentine,

November 6, 2006 - If the controversy over Terri Schiavo showed us anything, it’s that estate planning is more important now than ever before. Regardless of personal opinions, in the end, it was Terri who really mattered. And it is your choices and beliefs that matter when it comes to your own decisions. A Gallup Survey released in June of 2005, showed that 60 percent of Americans don’t have living wills. Read more...

Money, Insurance News for Seniors & Boomers

Educating Boomers on Realty of Long-Term Care is Focus of Awareness Week

Industry event urges proactive approach to planning for LTC

November 4, 2006 – Educating baby boomers about the "reality of long-term care" and urging them to take a proactive approach to planning for these needs is the focus to Long-Term Care Awareness Week, an industry sponsored campaign that kicks off tomorrow. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Estate Planning: Assuring Your Wishes are Honored

Living will, medical power of attorney crucial estate planning steps

By Robert Valentine, CSA,

October 29, 2006 - Theresa was only 26 years old when she went into cardiac arrest. She fell down in the hallway of her apartment and was rushed to the hospital. She quickly lapsed into a coma, and then spent 15 years of her life in what doctors diagnosed as an irreversible persistent vegetative state. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Long-Term Care Insurance Offering More Choices

As healthcare costs increase, LTC insurance offers more options.

By Robert Valentine

October 9, 2006 - It’s no surprise that the price of healthcare in America is rising, and quickly. Since 1995, the cost of medical care in the U.S. has risen 40% and is showing no sign of slowing down. That kind of sticker-shock can be difficult to comprehend, even for those with solid retirement plans. It’s a trend that some insurers are trying to abate. Read more...

Money, Insurance & Investment for Seniors

Law Allows Certain Long-Term Care Insurance Policyholders to Exceed Medicaid's Asset Limits

When insurance is depleted, individuals may qualify for Medicaid and keep assets


October 6, 2006 - Soon residents in many states will be able to purchase special long-term care insurance policies that allow them to qualify for Medicaid even if their assets exceed the prescribed limits. In an effort to encourage people to purchase long-term care insurance, the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 (DRA) created the Qualified State Long Term Care Partnership program. The program expands to all states partnership programs currently available in only four states. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Great Ideas for Senior Citizens on Preventing Identity Theft


Editor's Note

  This is one of the best list of ideas on preventing identify theft we have seen. We recommend you email these unique actions to your friends. Just click here to email.  

Limiting exposure of personal information is the best way to protect yourself from fraud

By Robert Valentine, Certified Senior Advisor

October 5, 2006 - For the sixth consecutive year, identity theft surpassed construction, credit card and debt collection fraud as the most prevalent form of consumer fraud, according to the Federal Trade Commission, which received 255,000 identity theft complaints last year. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Retirement Being Redefined by Current Retirees Who Continue to Work

Baby boomers and younger workers have a thing or two to learn from current retirees

By Robert Valentine, Certified Senior Advisor

September 30, 2006 - Will most baby boomers truly retire? The old mainstays of golf, grandkids and travel haven’t been enough to satisfy many retirees from previous generations. With the great amounts of energy and success that exist within the baby boomer generation, retirement isn’t likely to sustain their attention much longer than it did their parents’. Read more...

Money Management & Insurance for Seniors

So You Have Decided To Sell Your Annuity or Did You Know You Could?

You can sell your annuity thanks to emergence of secondary market

By Michael Vaughan

September 22, 2006 - Your advisor or agent told you. Probably more than once. It was written all over the contract. You may have thought about it, but never thought it would be a problem. The ‘it’ we’re referring to is the fact that once you purchase your annuity, you cannot sell it. You are stuck with it for life. Read more...

Long-Term Care Insurance Decision Should Be Made After Careful Study

Attorney explains what you should look for in company, policy

September 15, 2006 - When the first Long-Term Care policies were offered thirty years ago, they were primarily for nursing home use and designed to kick in when Medicare ran out. These were not the feature rich, comprehensive benefit policies we see today, aimed at aging baby boomers, says Frank N. Darras, who claims to be the nation’s leading disability and long-term care insurance lawyer. Read more... including links to the latest news on LTC insurance.

Money Matters for Seniors

Switching Gears: Reverse Mortgages Offer Unique Way to Retire with Extra Income

Your home has given you a lot -  with RM, it can give you even more

By Robert Valentine, Certified Senior Advisor

September 8, 2006 - Dorothy, the main character of the movie, The Wizard of Oz, once exclaimed, “There’s no place like home!” Even in a world much different than the one that existed when The Wizard of Oz was filmed, that old adage still holds true. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Nursing Home Costs Continue to Rise and Congress Takes Notice

As care costs sky-rocket, long-term care insurance is more attractive

By Robert Valentine, Certified Senior Advisor

September 5, 2006 - America’s elderly with special needs and their loved ones have always paid a high price for long-term medical care. The emotional and financial toll of an extended stay in a care facility or nursing home can be extremely costly. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Estate Planning: Avoiding Probate

Probate can be costly and time consuming. We’ll show you a few potential ways to save.

By Robert Valentine, Certified Senior Advisor

August 28, 2006 - When Elvis Presley died, his estate was worth over $10 million dollars. Then it went through probate. After appraisal costs, legal fees, executor’s fees, and estate taxes, “The King’s” estate was left with only $3 million. Because of improper estate planning, a whopping 73% of Elvis’ estate was wiped out. So what did all that money pay for? And how can you avoid some of the same mistakes? Let’s find out. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Estate Planning: Ensuring your Legacy

A will and financial power of attorney are crucial in estate planning, but there is more

By Robert Valentine, Certified Senior Advisor

August 11, 2006 - Deciding how you want to be remembered after you’re gone can be one of the most important decisions you make. Do you want your legacy to be judged by your entire life or by a bitter legal battle over your assets? Read more...

Insurance, Money & Investments for Seniors

What a Good Long-Term Care Policy Should Include

ElderLawAnswers has advice on choosing LTC insurance

Click to ElderLawAnswers.comAugust 10,2006 - As nursing home and long-term care costs continue to rise, the Deficit Reduction Act has made it more difficult to qualify for Medicaid to pay for nursing home costs. Long-term care insurance can help cover expenses, but long term care insurance contracts are notoriously confusing. How do you figure out what is right for you? The following are some tips to help you sort through all the different options. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Leaving Behind the Wealth of Life

Ethical wills have become a growing estate planning tool to ensure legacies for generations to come.

By Robert Valentine, Certified Senior Advisor

August 5, 2006 - Many Americans are beginning to realize there may be a gap in their estate plan. Sure, long-term care insurance, a living will, a regular will, and other important estate documents are essential to a comprehensive plan. But how do you make known your wishes for the financial legacy you leave behind? Read more...

Money, Insurance & Investments for Seniors

Estate Tax Reduction Dead for Now after Senate Rejects Bill

GOP tried including it with minimum wage increase to tempt Democrats


Click to ElderLawAnswers.comAugust 4, 2006 - The U.S. Senate has rejected a bill that combined a rise in the minimum wage with a reduction in the estate tax. The reduction or elimination of the estate tax, a long-cherished Republican goal, now appears to be a dead issue at least until after the November election. Read more...

Estate Tax Repeal Fails Again; GOP Scrambles for Other Options


Click to ElderLawAnswers.comJuly 25, 2006 - With no publicity or fanfare, on the night of July 20 Senate Republicans made another failed attempt to bring total repeal of the estate tax to a vote. The vote was 57-41, short of the 60 votes needed to break a Democratic filibuster. Read more...

How to Reduce Long-Term Care Insurance Costs


Click to ElderLawAnswers.comJuly 20, 2006 - While long-term care insurance can be a good way to pay for a nursing home stay or a home health care worker, it doesn't come cheap. Annual premiums vary significantly, depending on your age, health, and the type of policy, but policies can run as high as $5,000 per year. You do not need to pay that much, however. The following are some ways to reduce your costs. Read more...

Women Bear Greater Share of Long Term Care Risks and Costs

They have 60% greater chance than men of entering a nursing home

July 18, 2006 – A study by Genworth Financial has found women were 60 percent more likely than men to enter a nursing home at some point in their lives and may experience large financial sacrifices in their roles as America's predominant unpaid care providers. Read more...

Americans Less Concerned About Long-Term Care than 10 Years Ago

Yet, more believe LTC costs could significantly reduce retirement income

July 5, 2006 - Despite the backdrop of an aging U.S. population with increasing longevity, and spiraling long term care (LTC) costs, Americans are less worried today than they were roughly a decade ago about needing and paying for LTC, according to a new survey of 1,000 people ages 21 to 75. Read more...


Growing Demand for Financial Planners for Senior Citizens


New York Times tells seniors what they need to know

July 2, 2006 – The New York Times has published online and in the Sunday newspaper an article about the growing demand for financial planners that specialize in helping senior citizens. Called, "For older Americans, Money Advice Is Just a Start," is by Stacie Z. Berg and is a very complete look at the various certifications for these planners and what seniors should look for in choosing an adviser. To view the article click here. You may have to register but it is free.


Insurance Information for Senior Citizens Provided on Website

Insurance commissioners provide information by life stages

June 21, 2006 – A Website is available to help senior citizens better understand the complicated subject of insurance. It is sponsored by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) and, they say, is designed to help consumers deal with "a maze of options and cost considerations." It is organized by "life state needs" and the "Empty Nesters" section is for senior citizens. Read more...

Money Matters for Senior Citizens

Senior Citizens Better Prepared for Financial Emergency than Younger Americans

All leave money on the table by not taking advantage of interest rates

June 21, 2006- Senior citizens are more likely than others to have emergency savings accounts. More than half of those age 65 and older could get through a three-month emergency but less than 40 percent of all Americans have such a nest egg, according to a new poll. It also found many with savings are leaving money on the table by not taking advantage of rising interest rates. Almost 7 percent earn no interest, and 30 percent are earning less than 3 percent. Read more...

Money Management & Insurance

New Website Designed to Protect Senior Citizens in Buying Annuities

Annuity sales training says treat seniors like 'blind 12-year-olds'


ElderLawAnswers.comMay 23, 2006 - An article in the Wall Street Journal in 2002 described a training session at "Annuity University," which billed itself as the "nation''s first and foremost Annuity Sales Training School." Included in training session advice on how to sell annuities to seniors was the following: “Treat them like they’re blind 12-year-olds . . .”; "There''s the technical answer," . . . and "there''s the senior answer”; and "Tell them you can protect their life savings from nursing home and Medicaid seizure of assets. They don't know what that is, but it sounds scary." Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

How Senior Citizens Protect Their Legacy with Estate Planning

Leaving a proper legacy has become a science, these basics get you started.

By Robert Valentine, Certified Senior Advisor

April 21, 2006 - A person’s legacy cannot be measured by one solitary event in his or her life. Rather, legacies, like lives themselves, must be measured as a whole. If you’ve ever taken a step back and examined your own life and legacy, what have you found? Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Senior Investors Should Understand Market Capitalization

Small, mid and large cap stocks all have their individual benefits.

By Robert Valentine, Certified Senior Advisor

April 13, 2006 - One size usually doesn’t “fit-all” and especially not when it comes to the stock market. Choosing the right sized company or fund can be a tricky prospect for many senior citizens. “How are the different levels defined?” and “What are the pros and cons of each type?” are two major questions many people have. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Senior Citizen Investors Can Help a Charity and Themselves

Charitable trusts are a handy tax-saving tool and benefit a charity of your choice

By Robert Valentine, Certified Senior Advisor

April 10, 2006 - Last December, the White House Conference on Aging held its first meeting in 10 years. The conference addressed the growing number of baby boomers reaching retirement and highlighted how a large number of them are contemplating volunteering. Read more..

Annual Long-Term Care Costs Move Above $70,000 in 2006

Genworth Financial poll shows 65% have no long-term care plans

March 27, 2006 - The average cost of long term care in nursing homes, assisted living facilities and in the home increased over the past year, with assisted living and in-home costs rising more sharply than nursing home care, according to Genworth Financial's annual "Cost of Care" survey. And, in the face of rising costs for all categories of long term care, Genworth found 65 percent of Americans surveyed in a new national poll admit to having made no long term care plans for themselves or a spouse. Read more...

Senate Aging Chair Wants Tax Incentives for Long-Term Care Savings

March 15, 2006 – At a hearing last week on the preparedness of Americans for long-term care financing, held by the Senate's Special Committee on Aging, Chairman Gordon H. Smith (R-Oregon) pledged to introduce legislation offering tax incentives for those who invest in long-term care savings. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Don't Get Carried Away Investing 401(k) Funds in Company’s Stock

Was it too much of a good thing for Enron employees?

By Robert Valentine, Certified Senior Advisor

March 10, 2006 - Horror stories of Enron’s collapse abound and anyone who’s aware of the rapid drop in Enron stock prices is also aware of how quickly most employees lost their financial security. All told, employees participating in Enron’s 401(k) plan lost massive amounts of money, and in the case of WorldCom employees, they lost over 1 billion dollars. One of the biggest reasons for such a collapse in 401(k) savings was due to the large amount of Enron and WorldCom stock employees held in their own plans. Read more...

Senior Alert

Investors Warned of 13 Most Likely Scams for 2006

Indiana official calls list the "Unlucky 13," warns Baby Boomers beware

March 3, 2006 – Indiana's Secretary of State Todd Rokita yesterday released a report outlining the 13 most common ways investors are likely to be trapped in 2006. He identified personal information scams, oil and gas investment fraud, and prime bank schemes as the greatest potential threats to investors this year. He noted his heightened concern for Baby Boomers, who may fall for one of the traps as they invest for retirement. An equal alert should go out to senior citizens who are investing their retirement funds. Read more...

Feds Push Senior Citizens to LTC Insurance But They Can't Afford It

Two studies indicate Medicaid changes won't change much for those in need

March 2, 2006 - The Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 makes it much harder for individuals to qualify for Medicaid nursing home benefits. Supporters of the legislation contended that it would prompt many more seniors to purchase long-term care insurance, thus alleviating reliance on Medicaid and the resulting government cost. The problem is Long-Term Care Insurance is too expensive for most senior citizens who need it the most. Read more...

Looming Crisis of Long-Term Care Highlighted in New Study

March 1, 2006 – With Americans living longer, the risks of needing long-term care is increasing. A new study says senior citizens currently turning 65 face an average of three years of need for LTC some time before they die, with one in five expected to need five years of care or more. Much of the care will be provided by family members. Though half of today's retirees will incur no out-of-pocket expenses for LTC, 1 percent will need more than $250,000 of their own money set aside and invested at age 65 to pay for their future care. Read more...

New Law Pushes Long-Term Care Insurance Coverage

By Daniel C. Vock, Staff Writer

Feb. 20, 2006 - Thanks to a new federal law, states will be able to reward senior citizens who buy long-term care insurance by letting them hang on to assets while Medicaid pays for their nursing home care. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Managing Your Retirement Fund – Sit, Stay or Roll Over

By Robert Valentine, Certified Senior Advisor

Feb. 19, 2006 - With just some basic preparation you and your financial planner could have your retirement fund trained to overcome obstacles with the grace of a champion pedigree. Is it possible to train your retirement plan? We think so. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Why Planning for Long-Term Care is Necessary in Today’s World

By Robert Valentine, Certified Senior Advisor

Feb. 11, 2006 - James and Irene Norris spent their lives surviving. The two owned and operated a small business together for over 60 years, surviving the stock market crash, the Great Depression, seventeen U.S. Presidencies, and two World-Wars. All while raising two sons. But there was one thing they didn’t plan on: long-term care. Read more...

Long-Term Crisis

Only 1 in 4 U.S. Adults Think They Can Pay for Long-Term Care

41% Confident they do not have enough money, 33% Unsure

Feb. 1, 2006 - Only a quarter (26%) of U.S. adults think they have or will have saved enough money to finance their own potential long-term care needs as they age. Fully 41 percent do not think they will have enough money to cover their expenses as they age and 33 percent are not sure. These findings are in a new Wall Street Journal Online/Harris Interactive Personal Finance Poll. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Late Retirement Planning gets Lesson from Olympic Team

1980 U.S. Men’s Hockey Team teaches us about late-stage retirement planning

By Robert Valentine, Certified Senior Advisor,

Jan. 31, 2006 - It was February of 1980, at Madison Square Gardens during the height of the Cold War. It was there, that the U.S. Men’s Olympic Hockey team took on what experts considered the world’s best hockey team at the time: the U.S.S.R. It was an exhibition match meant to be a preview of the upcoming Olympics and the U.S. was trounced, 10-3. Read more...

Seniors Helping Seniors Launches For-Profit Franchise System

Franchises starting in Pennsylvania are available nationwide for $25,000,

Jan. 27, 2006 – Seniors Helping Seniors in Home Services, which has been a non-profit helping senior citizens retain their independent living at home, has announced they are expanding from their Pennsylvania base and turning to a for-profit franchise system. Franchises, available nationwide, require a $25,000 fee. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Estate Planning: The Gift that Keeps on Giving

Gifting is one of the many estate planning tools available.

By Robert Valentine, Columnist, Certified Senior Advisor,

Jan. 23, 2006 - If you’re like most Americans, you like to give gifts nearly as much as you like to receive them.  Luckily, if you’re serious about estate planning there’s a handy technique called gifting that can potentially save your family, friends and heirs a lot of money on estate taxes in the future. Read more...

Money Matters for Seniors

Social Security: Collect Later, Collect More

Many Americans collect Social Security benefits early and face a penalty, but by waiting until their official retirement age, they would receive full benefits.

By Robert Valentine, Columnist, Certified Senior Advisor,

Jan. 19, 2006 - John Post works hard.  Born during World War II, just before the Baby Boom began, he’s 62 years old and has spent his entire career in education.  As a high school administrator, most of his work days start at 7 a.m., and many don’t end until 10 or 11 p.m. after a school-related event.  He works six days a week and rarely takes a vacation.  While he’s in decent health, it’s been a year since triple-bypass surgery and he does his best to eat right and exercise. Read more...

IRS Issues Long-Term Care Premium Deductibility Limits for 2006


Nov. 8, 2005- The Internal Revenue Service has announced the 2006 limitations on the deductibility of long-term care insurance premiums from taxes. Read more...

Guarding Your Wealth for Seniors

Oversight Needed On Equity-Indexed Annuities

By Jeffrey D. Voudrie, CFP

Oct. 24, 2005 - The sales of Equity-Indexed Annuities has increased 45% the first 6 months of this year. I’m concerned that the vast majority of those sales are unsuitable for the investors buying them. Oversight by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) is desperately needed to protect retirees from being taken to the cleaners by agents hungry for the large commission. Read on to find out how this oversight will benefit you. Read more...

Guarding Your Wealth for Seniors

Clearing Up Estate Document Confusion

Living Will, Living Trust, Powers of Attorney...

By Jeffrey D. Voudrie, CFP

Oct. 14, 2005 - Few topics confuse investors more than figuring out what estate-related documents they need. Living Wills, Living Trusts, and Powers of Attorney are just a few of the terms that most find hard to define, let alone understand. But being comfortable with these terms and what each one can do for you is important, and can make the difference between your wishes being followed or creating a nightmare. Read more...

Guarding Your Wealth for Seniors

The Real Reason For Long-Term Care Insurance

By Jeffrey D. Voudrie, CFP

Oct. 10, 2005 - My mother-in-law recently passed away after a long and courageous battle with cancer. Throughout her battle, our family had to deal with many emotional and legal issues. Read more...

Guarding Your Wealth for Seniors

To Trust or Not to Trust? That is the Question for Seniors

Is a Living Trust right for you and how to go about getting one if needed

By Jeffrey D. Voudrie, CFP

Oct. 4, 2005 - Living Trusts have become very popular and are being heavily promoted to seniors. Should you Trust or not Trust? That is the question. Read on to learn some simple guidelines that will help you know whether a Living Trust may be right for you and how to go about getting one if needed. Read more...

Boomer, Senior Women Treated for Breast Cancer Get Life Insurance at Regular Rate

Hartford Financial lowers rate in recognition of improved prognosis for early stage breast cancer

Oct. 4, 2005 - The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc. has become the first life insurer in the nation to offer life insurance to certain women age 40 and older, who have been treated for early stages of breast cancer, at the same prices as other healthy women their age. Previously, women treated for this disease would have to pay more for coverage or would be denied coverage but Hartford is making the change due to the improved prognosis. Read more...

Guarding Your Wealth for Seniors

Beyond the Living Will: Seniors Have More to Consider

There are other important documents seniors need in place

By Jeffrey D. Voudrie, CFP

Oct. 3, 2005 - Living wills have received a great deal of attention due to the Terry Schiavo situation. Because her end-of-life wishes were in dispute, family members battled each other in the courts over her treatment and care. By having a proper Living Will, you can avoid such confusion. But a Living Will doesn’t ensure you have all your bases covered. There are other equally important documents you must have in place. Read more...

Guarding Your Wealth for Seniors

Seniors Not Getting The Whole Story on Mortgages

By Jeffrey D. Voudrie, CFP
Sept. 26, 2005 -- Financial salespeople such as investment advisors and mortgage brokers are recommending ‘new’ types of mortgages to senior citizens and baby boomers for improving cash-flow, freeing up money to invest, and having money to take that dream vacation. Their sales pitches sound so enticing. But here’s what they don’t tell you. Read more...

Variable Annuity Purchases by Seniors Grow Despite Controversy

Researches say shift taking place in where senior citizens get annuities - brokers up, insurance companies down

Aug. 17, 2005 - Despite a series of state and federal investigations in recent years into inappropriate variable annuity sales to senior citizens, the percentage of annuities purchased through brokers or other investment professionals jumped from 52 percent in 2003 to 57 percent in 2004, according to the Market Audit. Read more...

What Senior Citizens Need to Know When Considering an Annuity

Ten questions seniors should ask themselves before the purchase

Aug. 15, 2005 – Senior citizens are besieged by sales efforts pushing annuities, which often make them leery, but many financial experts do suggest an annuity as a beneficial option for many older Americans. The National Association for Variable Annuities (NAVA) has released a list of ten questions senior citizens should ask themselves if they are considering purchasing an annuity as a retirement vehicle. “An annuity,” they say, “is a flexible financial retirement vehicle combining guaranteed lifetime income payments, other insurance benefits and tax-deferred savings.” Read more...

Ambiguous Estate Planning Can Create Family Turmoil


July 24, 2005 - Roy Ayers and his wife, Lorayne, wanted to protect their money from nursing home costs, but instead of consulting an elder law professional, they decided to take matters into their own hands. They ended up causing bigger problems for themselves and their family. Read more...

New Gov Website Says Households Can Reduce Energy Bill Up To 30 Percent

Senior citizens, many in older homes, may find information to save a few pennies for healthcare

July 11, 2005 - Three government agencies have combined forces to create a new Website aimed at making American homes more energy efficient and reducing energy bills for consumers. Senior citizens, millions financially strapped, will no doubt welcome any reduction in household costs they can be achieved. The site sponsors say many households could save “20 to 30 percent on their household energy bill.” Read more...

Senior Citizens Confident Assets Will Carry Them in Retirement to Age 85

Leaving an inheritance is not a priority for the Silent Generation

June 21, 2005 – The vast majority of senior citizens between the ages of 59 and 71 are confident that have enough money to live comfortably until at least age 85. This study released today refers to this group as the “Silent Generation” and gauges their income and spending patterns in retirement. Read more...

As Many Seniors Know: Money doesn't buy happiness - - except when disability strikes

Study finds financial 'buffer' appears to help preserve well-being after health setbacks

April 6, 2005 – As many senior citizens have learned, the old saying that ‘money doesn't buy happiness' may hold true most of the time, but when a serious health problem comes along, financial resources may really cushion the blow to a person's psyche. Read more...

Older Workers More Willing Than Young to Accept Change, Says New Study

March 11, 2005 - Older workers are more inclined and interested in making changes to benefit the organization than younger workers, says a researcher at Louisiana State University. Read more...

Special Tax Help for Seniors Provided by Aging Committee

Feb. 9, 2005 - The Senate Special Committee on Aging has issued tax information especially for senior citizens for tax year 2004. The Committee has included a checklist for itemized deductions such as medical and dental expenses; a standard deduction table; and information about how to ask the IRS for help when filing your tax returns. Please click here to download the report [pdf (194 kb)]

Older Americans Can Protect Credit By Understanding Scams

Credit card companies offer advice for seniors on avoiding scams, ID theft

Nov. 8, 2004 – Americans 55 and older control 70 percent of the personal wealth in the U.S., have excellent credit ratings and are the fastest growing group of Internet users. They also account for 80 percent of the fraud complaints logged with the Federal Trade Commission. More... 11/08/04*

What is Life Settlement?

Life Insurance Finding Value in a New Marketplace - Life Settlement

Oct. 6, 2004 - A growing industry is in the business of purchasing life insurance from insured senior citizens for more than the surrender value and less than the final death benefit. The following article was written for by a broker in this business. More... 10/06/04*

Greenspan Again Pushing for Higher Retirement Age

Aug. 27, 2004 – Federal Reserve Chief Alan Greenspan was back on the speaking circuit today pushing for Americans to increase the retirement age to meet the pressure that will be applied to the federal budget as it struggles to meet the demands from the boom in the senior citizen population. More... 8/27/04*

Tips for Getting Out of Debt

Financial Crunch Driving Senior Citizens to Use Credit Cards Carelessly

Aug. 18, 2004 - Increasingly, older Americans, those 55 or older, are caught in a financial crunch that is forcing them to rely on credit cards for survival. A new study says these seniors use the cards more often and with less care than adults aged 18 to 34. More... 8/18/04*

Legislation on Long-Term Care Insurance Topic for Web Video

Aug. 2, 2004 – A video featuring a discussion of current legislation about long-term care insurance is available on the Web. It is one of the weekly series of videos produced by the U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging as part of their “Washington Report.” More... 8/02/04*

2000 Study

Senior Citizens Pay More Out-of-Pocket for Dental Care Than Younger Americans

May 7, 2004 – The current focus on the economic problems of the American elderly is on the cost of prescription drugs, but there is another serious medical cost not covered by Medicare – dental services – that most seniors pay with their own funds. More... 5/7/04*

Senior Citizens Poor Money Managers

Study Says Older Americans Own More of Nation's Wealth: Having Trouble Managing It

May 6, 2004 – AARP released a new study today – their fourth annual Beyond 50 report – reporting that older Americans (45 and over in this latest lowering-of-the-age-group focus by AARP) control more of the wealth than 20 years ago but are having problems dealing with it. AARP did look at those 65 and up and decided they are “lost” financial managers. More... 5/6/04*

Debt Burden Growing for Older American Households

Debt Payments Relative to Income About Same as 1992

April 27, 2004 - Older American households in 2001 became a significantly larger percentage of all families burdened with debt in excess of 40 percent of their incomes, according to a new report by the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI). More... 4/27/04*

What? Me Worry?

Seniors May Be Broke But They Don’t Worry About It

March 30, 2004 – Seniors (60+) are more likely that others to be broke but they are much less likely to be seriously worried about it, according to a new study. More... 3/30/04*

Retiring In The Red: A New Reality For Older Americans

America’s Seniors Taking on Unprecedented Levels of Debt to Cope with Shrinking Retirement Income and Rising Health Care Costs, as well as, Abusive Lending Practices

March 29, 2004 – A new study shows senior citizens are the fastest growing age group headed into bankruptcy court, primarily based on their growing credit card debt – an increase of 217 percent in the last ten years. This situation worsens with the shrinking wealth of seniors. More... 3/29/04*

Older Workers Would Delay Retirement If Employers Offered Phasing

Aging Baby Boomers, Worker Preferences Driving More Employers to Explore Phased Retirement Programs

March 22, 2004 -  On the heels of AARP research saying older workers are turning to self-employment, a new study says one out of three older workers would continue working longer if their employer offered a phased retirement program. Many employers, however, have yet to establish formal or informal arrangements -- such as shorter work weeks, flexible hours or the opportunity to try something new -- that would encourage older workers to delay full retirement, according to Watson Wyatt Worldwide. More... 3/22/04*

(Note: Click here to story on AARP Research saying seniors turning to self-employment)

Helping Seniors Save on Taxes is Goal of Free Help from Senate Aging Committee

March 16, 2004 - “Protecting Older Americans Against Overpayment of Income Taxes,” is a document available online or mail from the U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging. More... 3/16/04*

Many Americans Do Not Protect Themselves From Fraudulent Tax Preparers, Says Survey

Seniors Do Worse Than Younger Folks

March 2, 2004 - Despite yearly warnings from the Internal Revenue Service, only half (52%) of all Americans are taking steps to protect themselves from fraudulent tax preparers and senior citizens are the worst, with only 46% taking precautions. More... 3/02/04*

AARP Annual Survey

Boomers, Seniors (45+) Score a "C" on Consumer Issues

Oct. 23, 2003 - Americans 45+ were judged average, with potential for improvement, when it comes to consumer issues based on findings from AARP's new 2003 Consumer Experiences Survey that examined individuals' experiences with financial products and services. The survey looked at credit behavior, fraud and financial planning. More... 10/23/03*

IRS Helps Taxpayers Preserve Retirement Savings by Allowing a Change to Pension Distribution Amounts

Oct. 24, 02 - The Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service have released Revenue Ruling 2002-62 that will help taxpayers preserve their retirement savings when there is an unexpected drop in the value of their retirement savings. Click 10/24/2*

Is Your Pension Underfunded

Some 44 million workers in the United States have defined benefit retirement plans, which are the sole responsibility of the employer, but it now appears many of these plans are underfunded. Consumer Reports has some tips on checking yours. Also, how to save money when your parent moves in. Click 9/12/2*

Equity Index Annuity: Safe Place to Grow Your Money

By Robert Valentine, CSA, SJ Columnist

Would you like an investment that pays gains based on the stock market, yet helps protect your principal when the market declines? Click 8/28/2*

Helpful Information for Senior Consumers

The Consumer Protection Agency has posted a Web Page with links to consumer information specifically for senior citizens.  It has information about a wide range of topics from buying cars to saving money. Click 6/4/2**

Send Your Grandkids to College and Avoid the Tax Man

 Paying for a college education may be the greatest gift you can give.  However, it may also be the most costly. It is no secret that college expenses have been rising at an alarming rate. Here’s what you can do now to help with the rising costs of a higher education in the future -- it’s called the 529 College Savings Plan. Click 5/21/2*

Annuity.Net Offers Seniors Tools For Researching Annuities And Securing Their Retirement

Los Angeles, Calif., April 10, 2002 - Annuity.Net, an IdentityWeb, Inc. Company, makes it easy for seniors to calculate retirement needs, compare Fixed and CD Type annuity rates, request applications and instantly search a nationwide directory of licensed agents, brokers and financial advisors, according to the company. Click 4/10/2*

Millions of Dollars Lost By Seniors in "Prime Bank" Schemes In Past Three Years

Jan. 25, 2002 -  U.S. Senator Larry Craig, the ranking member of the Senate Special Committee on Aging, has joined with national officials and state law enforcement personnel warning senior citizens to be cautious with their retirement money. Click 1/25/2

ABA Launches Legal Consumer Web Site

The American Bar Association introduced a ``one-stop shopping'' Web site today giving consumers tips on a wide range of issues including health-care decisions about elderly parents, cancer patients' legal rights and safe mortgage borrowing. Click to site 8/6/01

> New Drug Plan for Uninsured Adults 11/2/00*

Results of a survey released by Merck-Medco, the nation's leading provider of prescription benefit management services, indicate that approximately 77 million Americans either have no prescription drug coverage (45 million) or consider their coverage inadequate (32 million).

> Insurers Must Get Creative to Serve Big Senior Market 10/31/00*

As the first wave of the baby boomers approaches retirement, how are insurers redefining products and services to meet changing lifestyle demands?

> Helping Your Child Buy A Home 10/30/00*

There are a variety of ways to help the kids get into home sweet home. The first hurdle that must be overcome is the down payment, but coming up with that kind of money takes some planning.

> Choosing Mutual Funds 10/17/00

Mutual Funds offer instant diversification, allowing an investor to own a piece of many companies, all with one transaction. But with over 5000 mutual funds to choose from, what criteria should people use to pick them? Includes Real Video by Merrill Lynch.

> Seniors Control Nation's Wealth 6/26/00*

New research from Kemper Funds reveals that investors aged 55 and older control more than 70 percent of the wealth. What's more, they most often rely on professional advice, compared to younger investors who like to be in control and call their own investment shots.


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