Retirement Watch Lighthouse Logo

More Articles on Retirement Planning


Retirement Stealth Tax: How To Avoid the ‘Widow’s Penalty’ Part II

It’s one of the Stealth Taxes no one talks about, and it comes at an emotionally vulnerable time. I’m referring to the “widow’s penalty tax.” Last week we discussed the first three potential hits to the surviving spouse: Income is likely to decline. Second, the surviving spouse is pushed into a higher tax bracket. A […]

Retirement Stealth Tax: How To Avoid the “Widow’s Penalty”

The widow’s penalty tax is one of the least known yet most onerous of the retirement Stealth Taxes. Since few people are aware of it, few retirement plans defend against the widow’s penalty. I frequently warn people about the “solo” years. Those are the years after one spouse has passed away. The surviving spouse must […]

The Most Important New Tax & Retirement Changes [Pandemic Update]

Some special tax and retirement plan rules were created in 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Congress recently extended one of them with some modifications but let another expire. One provision gave taxpayers more than 60 days to roll over IRA distributions to the original IRA or to another qualified retirement plan. The provision […]

estate planning

The Tax Law Changes Retirees Likely Haven’t Heard About

In late December, Congress passed – and former President Trump signed into law — the longest legislation they ever have. The Consolidated Appropriations Act was more than 5,000 pages. Most of the media attention was on the fiscal stimulus provisions, but there was a lot more in the law. Some tax law changes were overlooked […]

Is Social Security Still Shortchanging Beneficiaries?

Before I answer this question, here are two very important reminders (when it comes to your retirement money)… You don’t ask the IRS to help you pay the lowest taxes possible, and you shouldn’t rely on the Social Security Administration (SSA) to ensure you receive the maximum benefits. I’ve heard many anecdotal reports over the […]


Why Everyone Needs an Estate Tax ID & How To Get It

The federal estate tax is a tax paid after a person’s death on the value of the person’s property. A large amount of an estate is exempt from the federal estate tax. In 2021, the exempt amount is $11.7 million (for now). The amount is indexed for inflation each year. So, only the wealthiest estates […]

estate planning

Understanding the Last Will and Testament

The terms “last will and testament” and “will” often are used interchangeably and today mean the same thing. Both refer to a legal document that outlines a person’s final wishes regarding the distribution of assets and property after death and often other matters, such as the guardianship of minor children. Will is often used as […]


Today’s Long Term Care (LTC) Crisis Has a Solution [Our 2021 Strategy]

It’s estimated that more than 72% of older Americans (65 and over) will require long-term care (LTC). And there’s a 91% chance that, if you are married and over age 65, one of you will experience a long-term care event. What’s more, the average lifetime cost of their long-term care will range between $250,000 and […]

How To Simplify the Probate Process

In last week’s issue of Retirement Watch Weekly I presented 10 Steps to Avoid the Probate Process. Since this can be a complicated process, I’ll expand on those and explain the most commonly used probate forms. Probate can be a long and expensive process in which an estate is settled and distributed to the next […]

Investing Your IRA in Gold, Real Estate, and More

Click here to view the IRA Investment Guide: A Road Map for Avoiding the Tax Traps and Penalties for IRA special report. […]

All Topics

April 2021:

Congress Comes for your Retirement Money

A devastating new law has just been enacted, with serious consequences for anyone holding an IRA, pension, or 401(k). Fortunately, there are still steps you can take to sidestep Congress, starting with this ONE SIMPLE MOVE.

Log In

Forgot Password