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Oaktree Financial Advisors Blog

Social Security Statements Returning to Mailboxes

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Starting this September, the Social Security Administration (SSA) will resume mailings at five-year intervals to workers who have not signed up to view their statements online.

Your Social Security Statement provides a personal record of the earnings on which you have paid Social Security taxes during your working years. It also summarizes the estimated Social Security benefits you and your family may receive based on your earnings. These estimates can be used as part of your retirement planning.

The SSA stopped mailing statements in 2011 due to budget cuts. In February 2012 they resumed mailing statements to workers age 60 and older if not already receiving Social Security benefits. By May of 2012 they made online statements available.

Find out more here.

 

Eli Lilly and CEO John Lechleiter on foxbusiness.com

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*Oaktree Financial Advisors is neither endorsed by nor affiliated with Eli Lill

Victoria Craig at Fox Business did a great story about Eli Lilly and CEO John Lechleiter. 

Click here to read the story and watch the video.

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Double Your Charitable Gift

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*Oaktree Financial Advisors is neither endorsed by nor affiliated with Eli Lilly

Lilly ofwriting-checkfers one of the most robust benefits packages of any employer.  Many times busy Lilly employees are not fully aware of or do not take full advantage of all the benefits that are offered them.  One such benefit is the Matching Gifts Program.

As the end of the year approaches you may be thinking about your charitable donations for the 2013 tax year.  Did you know that you can help your chosen eligible non-profit organizations twice as much through the Eli Lilly and Company Foundation Matching Gifts Program?

Matching gifts are a great way for Lilly employees and retirees to maximize personal contributions to the charities of their choice and increase the impact of their gift.  The program will match employee and retiree gifts to qualified organizations.  There is a $25 minimum contribution for each match and a $30,000 total contribution limit per year for employees and a $2,500 limit per year for retirees.

You may request matching gifts online at www.easymatch.com/lillymg.  After receiving the match request, Lilly will contact the organization to verify receipt of the gift.  Lilly then issues a matching gift contribution to the organization.

If you're not already doing it, take a few extra minutes to complete the request form and double your donation!

Why You Need Life Insurance and How You May be Able to Save Money on it

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*Oaktree Financial Advisors is neither endorsed by nor affiliated with Eli Lilly

Life insurance is an essential part of your financial plan.  Here's why.  Whether you plan to work for 10, 20 or 30 more years, there are probably people like your spouse and children that are depending on the income that you are providing to support your family's lifestyle.  Your income also feeds the investing that you are doing to save for the day when you won't work any longer – your retirement.  You have planned well.  You know how much you need to have saved for retirement and you are contributing to your investments to achieve that savings goal.  Now, something tragic and unexpected happens to you and you pass away.  Your family no longer has you.  You can no longer fuel the family's retirement savings with your earnings.  Your plan was to continue working and contributing to those retirement investments for 10, 20 or 30 more years – wherever you are in your career.

HSA Can Double as a Retirement Account

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hsa-health-savings-accountAnother tip for Eli Lilly employees during your annual benefits enrollment.  If you're making maximum contributions to your 401(k) and IRAs and want some additional tax-favored savings, you might use an HSA to supplement your nest egg.  Even in retirement, you can tap the funds tax-free for medical needs. And starting at 65, you can withdraw penalty-free for any reason, though you'll owe income taxes.

The maximum allowable contribution to your HSA is $3,300 for an individual or $6,550 for a family.  Of that, Lilly will contribute $800 for an individual and $1,600 for a family.  There is also what is a called a catch-up contribution of $1,000 for individuals age 55 or older and not enrolled in Medicare.

You choose how the account is invested. If you're going to be using the money in the next five years keep it in the checking account in your HSA.  If you're saving it for long-term, go with the investment account that Lilly offers.

Money in an HSA can be invested in a manner similar to investments in an IRA.  Investment earnings are sheltered from taxation and withdrawals are tax free as long as they are used for qualified medical expenses.  Withdrawals that are not for documented qualified medical expenses are subject to income taxes and a 20% penalty.  The 20% tax penalty is waived for persons who have reached the age of 65 or have become disabled at the time of the withdrawal.  Then, only income tax is paid on the withdrawal, and in effect the account has grown tax deferred (similar to an IRA).

The HSA can be a terrific tool to help pay for your medical expenses with pre-tax dollars now and/or to save for expenses in retirement, whether you use the money then for medical or non-medical expenses.