It’s hard to believe we have only a few days left in 2010. The following list is comprised of things I feel most all of us should strive to get done before 12/31/2010. If you need assistance with any of these items, please let me know.
Things To Do:
1) Know where all of your money is – make sure each bank and investment company is prepared to send you your end-of-year statements. Is your address correct?
2) Investment management fees may be deductible – make sure your investment advisor/financial planner sends you a statement as to exactly how much you paid for their services in 2010. These amounts are not always reflected on a 1099.
3) Check your named beneficiaries – this is a good time to check all insurance policies, annuity contracts, bank records, trusts, and wills to make certain the named beneficiaries are accurate. Please confirm these designations in writing. Annuity owners may have double work to do: check the annuitant’s beneficiary AND the owner’s. (Please call with questions as annuities can be complex.)
4) Are you over 70 1/2 years-of-age? – if you have an IRA, make certain you received the proper Required Minimum Distribution (RMD). Remember that your account balance on 12/31/2010 will determine the amount of your 2011 RMD.
As important as all of the above is, I can’t end this message without some opinion so here you go:
I’m all for freedom and believe in a citizen’s “right to know” but when it comes to defense, I believe in the process. Certain leaks really do cause harm. Can you imagine how a financial advisor’s clients could be harmed if such a fiduciary “WikiLeaked”? Technology provides efficiency (most of the time) but just like medical advances such as cloning, boundaries seem appropriate.