Tax Considerations for Stock Options

When a company decides to grant stock options, rather than outright stock to an employee, they have a couple of choices of what type of options to grant. Depending on whether the stock options are non-qualified (NQSOs) or incentive stock options (ISOs) will result in a difference in terms of taxes paid by the company, as well as taxes paid by the recipient.

Stock options

When you are employed by a company that offers retirement benefits like a 401(k), if you’re like most people, you have some familiarity with the account. At the very least you probably know how to check your balance on the website. But for those of you who have access to a company stock plan account, they often contain a seemingly jumbled mix of actual stock, RSUs, vested options, dates for future options, and cryptic names like RSU21523 -01PG. Where do you begin?

Medicare – Turning 65

If your 65th birthday is approaching, now is a great time to familiarize yourself with Medicare and the enrollment process you will soon use to sign up for your benefits.

The Initial Medicare Enrollment Period begins 3 months (or 90 days) before your 65th birthday and ends 3 months after (exceptions may apply if your or your spouse are working and/or covered by an employer group health plan). During this time, you will have the option to sign up for hospital, physician, prescription, and other coverages. This can be done through two Medicare coverage models:

Insights: Employer-Sponsored Retirement Plans

One of the easiest ways to get started on your journey to achieving your financial goals is by taking advantage of the opportunities you have through an employer-sponsored retirement plan. Not only do these plans allow you simpler access to investment opportunities, but they also provide higher contribution limits, savings options you may not typically qualify for, and (in most cases) free money through matching or automatic contributions made by your employer.

Insights: Education Funding Considerations

It is no secret that the price of higher education has been increasing at a concerning rate for quite some time now. In fact, these costs have been growing at about twice the rate of general inflation during the past 10 years (about 5.0% per year). Politics aside, as college costs continue to be the heart of many debates, it is vital for anybody who is hoping to assist in their child’s future education to learn about the many different options that are currently available and to make the most out of those options.

Insights: Important Ages to Remember

If there’s one thing that we all have in common, it’s the fact that we all get older. Although each one of us has our own set of circumstances that makes our situation unique, there are specific ages that set a foundation to the plans we create, and the decisions we are faced with.

Financial success is all about making the most of your specific situation and the resources that you have. However, there are a variety of ages that can impact just about everyone and you should be aware of this “financial timeline” to be sure you aren’t missing out on any opportunities (and, in some cases, avoid unnecessary penalties.)

Insights: Welcome to Estate Planning

A common misconception about Estate Planning is that it’s only for the extremely wealthy or those with complicated financial situations. Arguably, Estate Planning could be the first item to discuss when developing a financial plan. Appropriate estate plans help protect somebody’s financial interest and create tax-efficiency. Furthermore, these discussions can lessen the weight on your loved ones’ shoulders during emotional times and identify who would care for your minor children if something should happen to you prematurely. Of course, everyone’s situation is a bit different and there are unique circumstances with equally unique plans that fit those cases, but there are plenty of items that every individual should consider.

Q & A - Taxes

This week’s guest is Aubrey Ramey, Clarify Wealth’s Chief Operations Officer. She has been in the financial industry for over 20 years. She joins us today to share her thoughts on taxes, being that it is a timely topic to begin the New Year.

Q & A - Diversification

This week’s guest is Brad Clark, Clarify Wealth’s Chief Investment Officer. He has been in the financial industry since 1987 and managing investments since 1995. He joins us today to share his thoughts on the importance of diversification in your investments.

Q & A - Estate Planning

This month’s topic for our Q&A is Estate Planning, and here to answer some frequently asked questions and provide some expertise is Chad Baxter. Chad works in our Lafayette, Indiana office and has been working with clients in estate planning, as well as other areas of financial planning, for several years. He carries both the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and Accredited Wealth Management Advisor℠ designations, and is here to share some of his experience and knowledge with us in regards to this topic.

Q & A - Small Business Retirement Planning

This week’s guest is Tanner Stepp, CFP®, AIF™, here to talk about some important considerations for small business retirement planning. Tanner has past experience and a real passion for this topic, and is a terrific resource for both owners and their employees in regards to making the most of their workplace retirement plans.

Go With What You Know

What’s next? We wish we knew exactly. In our business a crystal ball or a time machine would be so helpful. Experts on TV and in print are constantly issuing forecasts and proclamations, but most are embarrassingly wrong. There is so much we cannot know about the future, about the markets and economy.

As the old song lyric goes, “You don’t know which way the wind will blow, so how can you plan tomorrow?” While there are many things we cannot know about the future, there is much we can know about the present. So why not focus on what we can know?