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What’s the latest?  Whether it’s tax, investment, or life strategies you can read about it here! We always have a lot going on here at KHA so keep checking in. We’re glad to have you reading along!  

 

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

The news keeps getting better for Social Security recipients.It's now projected that benefits will increase 6.1% in 2022, up from the 4.7% forecast just two months ago. That would be the most significant increase since 1983.1...

Tuesday, July 27, 2021

Tax Planning for the Biden AdministrationPotential Strategies to Combat Increased Taxes Many individuals are stuck in a holding pattern as they wait to see what impact the Biden Administration will have on tax regulations. The...

Sunday, July 25, 2021

Studies have found that workers overestimate how much they will receive in Social Security benefits when they retire. Having a good understanding of the realities can help you plan for retirement. Researchers from the University of...

Wednesday, July 21, 2021

The real rate of return is an important personal finance concept to understand.It’s the rate of return on your investments after inflation. The real rate of return indicates whether you are gaining or losing purchasing power...

Sunday, July 18, 2021

Netflix’s popular new movie, I Care a Lot, may be far-fetched in a lot of ways, but it does highlight some real weaknesses in the guardianship system that make it possible for an unscrupulous guardian to take control of an...

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Tuesday, July 13, 2021

Inflation is defined as the general upward price movement of goods and services in an economy. The key word is “general.” Inflation tends to be uneven and affects the price of some items more than others.If you’ve...

Sunday, July 11, 2021

Medicaid long-term care benefits traditionally pay mainly for nursing home care, but the federal government can grant “waivers” to states allowing them to expand Medicaid to include home and community-based services. The...

Monday, July 5, 2021

Qualifying for Medicare hardly means free health care -- there are still premiums and deductibles. However, people who qualify for both Medicare and Medicaid (called “dual eligibility”) receive help paying their...

Friday, July 2, 2021

Recently, you may have seen headlines regarding the Securing a Strong Retirement Act, also referred to as the second version of the SECURE Act, or SECURE Act 2.0.As the bill moves from the House of Representatives to the Senate, many...

Wednesday, June 30, 2021

If there is a "silver lining" to all the inflation talk, it may be that Social Security benefits are expected to see a larger-than-normal increase in 2022.Preliminary estimates call for a 4.7% cost-of-living increase (COLA) in Social...

Sunday, June 27, 2021

Qualifying for Medicare hardly means free health care -- there are still premiums and deductibles. However, people who qualify for both Medicare and Medicaid (called “dual eligibility”) receive help paying their...

Friday, June 25, 2021

The American Rescue Plan, signed into law on March 11, 2021, not only increased the Child Tax Credit amount for 2021 but also included a provision for advanced payment to eligible families. To see if your family is eligible for the...

Sunday, June 20, 2021

To qualify for Medicaid coverage of long-term care, you must satisfy very complicated financial eligibility rules—rules that often can be traps for the unwary. One of the most significant traps is Medicaid's right to recover its...

Friday, June 18, 2021

Juneteenth is a celebration of freedom, marking the day when slavery came to an end in the United States. The observance of this holiday, formally recognized by the state of Texas in 1980, has continued to spread to the rest of the...

Sunday, June 13, 2021

Getting benefits through the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program is a great relief to a person under age 65 who is unable to earn a living because of a disability. Its monthly payments guarantee some degree of financial...

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Are you saving for the future?People often come to me asking for financial advice. Some want to know how to invest or diversify the money they’ve saved, but others admit to me they’re just not sure how to save. If...

Sunday, June 6, 2021

A recent felony charge against the mother of a special needs child in Minnesota offers a good reason why an independent trustee of a special needs trust, or at least oversight over a family member serving as trustee, may be a good idea...

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

I am an Independent Investment Advisor.What does that mean? What are the benefits? What difference might a relationship with an Independent Investment Advisor make for you and your loved ones?If you work with me:I’ll listen to...

Sunday, May 30, 2021

The talk is of tapering, and it’s making investors nervous.The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) released the minutes of its April meeting last week. The report suggested that should the economy continue to make progress, it...

Sunday, May 30, 2021

Among the many challenges for families is making sure there will always be enough money to provide lifetime care for their special needs children. The costs are daunting: therapies, housing, medical care, and education, to name just a...

Friday, May 28, 2021

A cyberattack shut down a major gas and energy pipeline supplying the East Coast of the United States for several days. The actual pipelines themselves are still functional and have since started running again, but it’s led to...

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Are you saving for the future?People often come to me asking for financial advice. Some want to know how to invest or diversify the money they’ve saved, but others admit to me they’re just not sure how to save. If...

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

What does it mean when two of the most powerful voices in American financial life seem to be saying two different things?In one corner, we have the “Oracle of Omaha,” investor Warren Buffett. As one of the nation’s...

Monday, May 24, 2021

On Wednesday, April 7th, 2020, our very own Kathryn Humecki and President of the Prairie State College Foundation moderated the 2021 Virtual Economic Forecast Breakfast with guest speaker Charles L. Evans, President & CEO, Federal...

Sunday, May 23, 2021

Choosing a nursing home for a loved one is a difficult decision and it can only be made more confusing by the various rating systems. A recent study found that using both Medicare’s Nursing Home Compare site and user reviews can...

Friday, May 21, 2021

Here’s a little-known fact that may help you save money on life insurance: when it comes to underwriting, insurance carriers typically rate clients to their closest birthday.What does that mean? It means that if you are 39 years...

Wednesday, May 19, 2021

In this month’s recap: Stocks notched a solid gain, fueled by a succession of positive economic reports and a strong start to the first-quarter earnings season. U.S. MarketsA succession of robust economic reports and a healthy...

Wednesday, May 19, 2021

We’re living longer. Are we investing wiser? As our generation faces its golden years, we’re learning more and more about trends in aging and trends in investing.With a significant portion of the population maturing and...

Sunday, May 16, 2021

Although Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients are subject to rigid asset limits, the federal government has provided a few avenues for beneficiaries to earn income that supplements their SSI benefit.The Social Security Act...

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Will your retirement dreams match your reality?That's perhaps the most critical question to ask people who are currently retired. Was your retirement what you expected, or was it something else?For more than 30 years, the Employee...

Sunday, May 9, 2021

Among the challenges of raising a child with special needs is figuring out how to provide for that child once you’re gone. If the child will never be able to earn a living, how can you determine how much of your own money to set...

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Have you been let go at work? What happens to the money you have saved in your employee retirement plan?If you have been terminated by your employer, you have 4 choices when it comes to your retirement plan money:Cash it out (and lose...

Monday, May 3, 2021

With Covid-19 proving to be deadlier to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) than just about any other group, it is little wonder that they, their families, and caregivers are eager to sort fact from fiction...

Sunday, May 2, 2021

Now and again, the price action on Wall Street can surprise even the most seasoned investors.Look no further than when President Biden in late April proposed an increase in the tax on capital gains to 39.6% from 20% for those...

Friday, April 30, 2021

Investors looking for "green shoots" to confirm that the economy is on the mend have seen plenty of examples in recent weeks. Retail sales rose 9.8% in March, the largest monthly gain since May 2020. It's important to remember that...

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

In most states, December 31 is an important deadline for parents and grandparents contributing to 529 plans. To qualify for a state tax credit or deduction this year related to your contribution, you may have to meet that year-end...

Monday, April 26, 2021

The Biden administration has announced relief for hundreds of thousands of people with disabilities who had their federal student loan debt reinstated because they failed to submit the proper paperwork during the COVID-19 pandemic....

Monday, April 19, 2021

President Joe Biden introduced the much-anticipated American Jobs Plan, which outlines an approach to spend roughly $2.2 trillion on the nation's infrastructure and other projects.As part of the legislative process, the Biden...

Sunday, April 18, 2021

Remember how satisfying it was setting up a trust for your child with special needs? You named a trustee and a successor trustee, signed the paperwork, and paid the legal bills, and then you rested easy at night knowing you had put a...

Sunday, April 11, 2021

Less than one month ahead of the traditional date, the IRS has delayed the deadline for filing and paying taxes. The new deadline is May 17, 2021. This new deadline also applies to making 2020 contributions to IRAs and Roth IRAs,...

Sunday, April 11, 2021

A bipartisan bill has been introduced in the House of Representatives that fixes a flaw in earlier legislation and would finally allow all veterans to allocate pension payments to their survivors with special needs without fear that...

Thursday, April 8, 2021

In this month’s recap: Stocks posted solid gains due to improving economic conditions and widening vaccination programs. However, tech and high-growth stocks played a limited role in the rally. U.S. MarketsImproved economic...

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

Inflation has emerged as one of the top financial concerns for investors as they size up the economy for the rest of the year.According to research by Deutsche Bank, Google searches for “inflation” are rising rapidly and...

Sunday, April 4, 2021

The American Rescue Plan, signed into law by President Biden on March 11, 2021, makes health coverage bought through the Affordable Care Act (ACA) vastly more affordable for millions of Americans, at least for two years, and also...

Sunday, April 4, 2021

For those with a Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account (FSA), there may be some good news on the horizon. The American Rescue Plan Act, signed into law by President Joe Biden, boosts the amount that companies can allow workers to...

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Among the many changes arising from the pandemic, one of the most noticeable was a change in American spending habits.A survey released in March 2021 by Pew Research shows that Americans have increasingly chosen to put away what extra...

Monday, March 29, 2021

More than six million people whose disabilities arose later in life will be able to open ABLE savings accounts if a bill just reintroduced in Congress, the ABLE Age Adjustment Act, becomes law. In 2014, Congress passed the Achieving a...

Thursday, March 25, 2021

Most people understand that stock prices don't go straight up. But when market volatility increases, the price action can test the mettle of even the most seasoned investor.In recent weeks, stock prices have trended lower with a few...

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Less than one month ahead of the traditional date, the I.R.S. has delayed the deadline for filing and paying taxes. The new deadline is May 17, 2021.1,2,3The delay follows continued disruption from the COVID-19 pandemic and a late...

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

2020 Individual Tax filing and payment Deadlines have been extended to Monday, May 17th for Federal and Illinois returns. Indiana has also extended their 2020 filing deadline to May 17th. HOWEVER, the 1st individual estimated tax...

Monday, March 22, 2021

In stark contrast to previous COVID-19 relief bills, the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, signed into law by President Biden on March 11, 2021, contains numerous provisions specifically aimed at supporting people with disabilities,...

Monday, March 15, 2021

The House of Representatives passed a $1.9 trillion relief package focused on economic relief following the COVID-19 pandemic. The bill was signed into law at the White House on Thursday.1Beyond the much-discussed $1,400 stimulus...

Thursday, March 11, 2021

I’m sure you’ve heard that the House recently passed the Senate another round of stimulus to try and counteract the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The new stimulus package could narrow income eligibility to...

Wednesday, March 10, 2021

In this month’s recap: The burgeoning economic recovery and decreasing number of COVID-19 infections lifted stocks. U.S. MarketsStocks notched a solid gain in February thanks to growing optimism surrounding the economic recovery...

Wednesday, March 10, 2021

One time-tested principle of investing is, "when bond yields move higher, bond prices tend to move lower." Investors are doing a "double take" on the 10-year Treasury yield, which recently topped 1.5% — its highest level in...

Tuesday, March 9, 2021

How do cities stack up for people with disabilities seeking the best place to live? Which provide the most accessible sidewalks, transportation, entertainment, and parks? Which score high for low-cost housing, jobs, public hospitals,...

Sunday, March 7, 2021

The acronym “SPAC” is showing up more often these days because there is some big money behind the revitalized investment approach.SPAC stands for Special Purpose Acquisition Company, and they are sometimes referred to as...

Sunday, March 7, 2021

What's your "go-to" source for financial information?"Family and friends" is the #1 answer given in the annual Retirement Confidence Survey. But a close second is search engines and other online tools, including online forums like the...

Wednesday, March 3, 2021

At this time last year, it was still unknown that a deadly global pandemic was on the rise, eventually stalling economic growth and sending crude oil prices into negative territory. But recently, oil prices have surged, with crude...

Tuesday, March 2, 2021

On Monday, Feb. 22, the White House announced several changes to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) that went into effect on Wednesday, Feb. 24. These changes are intended to further target “the smallest businesses and those...

Monday, March 1, 2021

Retirement plans often make up a significant portion of the assets of parents of children with special needs, or of individuals who have become disabled as adults. In such cases, the question arises as to whether the retirement plan...

Thursday, February 25, 2021

It can be easy to overlook the nation’s solid economic fundamentals when the financial media splashes stories every day about an army of amateur traders, short-selling mania, and initial public offerings (IPOs) that double in...

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

The IRS published an article titled “Things taxpayers should know when choosing between standard and itemized deductions” on February 22, 2021 to help taxpayers decide which deduction to take. “Taxpayers benefit from...

Monday, February 22, 2021

Special Needs Answers recently published an article with suggestions and resources for individuals and/or families traveling with a loved one with special needs: "Resources for Travelers with Special Needs Are Only a Click Away". For...

Sunday, February 21, 2021

In its first three weeks in office, President Biden’s administration reversed a range of high-profile Trump Administration regulations that affected people with disabilities -- rules covering Medicaid, disability reviews,...

Sunday, February 14, 2021

By their very nature, special needs trusts (SNTs) are usually designed to terminate, or at least radically change, when the trust's primary beneficiary dies. But terminating a special needs trust is not as simple as merely writing a...

Tuesday, February 9, 2021

1099 FormsExplaining the many types of 1099 forms and their uses.   What is a 1099 form? This is a record of payment from an individual or entity, showing a payment, generated for your records. The individual/entity sends a...

Sunday, February 7, 2021

As many as eight million eligible citizens may not have received their second Covid relief checks, primarily because their income is so low that they have not been required to file tax returns. On January 22, President Biden issued an...

Wednesday, February 3, 2021

IRS Criminal Investigation warns taxpayers about new wave of COVID-19 scams as second round of Economic Impact Payments are delivered Date: January 13, 2021 Contact: newsroom@ci.irs.gov WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service's...

Monday, February 1, 2021

Watch as Martin Landry, Director of Portfolio Management at Avantax, provides an update and recounts the top events that have affected the market and economy in the last several weeks in the January & February Market &...

Monday, February 1, 2021

You may have heard the news about stocks for certain companies suddenly ballooning, quickly going from lunch money prices to several hundred dollars a share. In one case, the shares rose over 1700% since December 2020.1 So, what...

Monday, February 1, 2021

Every few months, you may hear the phrase “earnings season” as you listen to financial news.But what exactly is “earnings season,” and why is it important to Wall Street?Earnings season is the time when a...

Monday, February 1, 2021

One area that particularly vexes trustees of special needs trusts is how to get beneficiaries what they need without running afoul of the strict rules for public benefits like Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Monitoring how money is...

Thursday, January 28, 2021

The window is open to apply for the second round of PPP loans (January 13, 2021, until March 31, 2021). Please call (Ashton 708.748.7094) or email with questions about eligibility. KEY TAKE-AWAYS: Eligibility: 300 or less employees and...

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Recently, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced that tax season will start a little later than usual. This year the IRS will begin accepting and processing 2020 tax returns on Friday, February 12, 2021.1In light of the December...

Monday, January 25, 2021

Advice on Working with a Financial Planner https://specialneedsanswers.com Your experience when working with one of our financial planning members or any other special needs financial planner will be much better if you know what to...

Wednesday, January 20, 2021

The 10-year Treasury yield has climbed higher since the New Year, which means that some bond prices are dropping. You may have seen the headlines that say, “10-Year Yields Over 1%.”For some, the first time they experience...

Friday, January 8, 2021

The first week of 2021 has already had many ups and downs. Just because it’s a new year doesn’t mean that the 2020 issues go away, and so far, 2021 has been no exception to this rule.The markets opened on January 4 and...

Monday, January 4, 2021

After a bit of political posturing in December, the $900 billion Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 (2021 CAA) was signed into law by President Trump as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact employers and employees...

Monday, January 4, 2021

Few life events are more stressful than a job loss.If you or someone you know is in this situation due to COVID-19, you’ll likely have several questions about job hunting, unemployment insurance, and health care. You may also be...

Sunday, December 27, 2020

Your investment strategy is a lot like a marriage. One day you may feel like everything’s going swimmingly. The next day, there might be an argument over who forgot to load the dishwasher. And even the best marriages and...

Sunday, December 20, 2020

This time of year, you might glance at an account statement and see there has been an adjustment. But there may not be any cause for concern.Many mutual funds in December pay shareholders capital gains distributions that they have...

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Retirement Plan Options for Small BusinessesThe SECURE Act and CARES Act may complicate the decision. As a small-business owner, figuring out retirement choices can be a little intimidating. How do you pick the most appropriate...

Sunday, December 13, 2020

As Wall Street pushes higher, a pandemic-weary Main Street is relearning how to manage cash flow with the hope of keeping its retirement dreams alive.Self-employed Americans, and the people working for them, account for roughly 30...

Friday, December 11, 2020

The purpose of this post is to bring light to tax planning challenges and opportunities brought about by the CARES Act (2019) and SECURE Act (2020). Uncertain economic times provide opportunities in tax planning. This letter will...

Friday, December 11, 2020

We get a lot of questions about deductible meals/entertainment: 50% Deductible (to business owner) meals: Ordinary and Necessary for business Not lavish or extravagant Taxpayer or employee present at meal Provided to customer,...

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

With the Federal Reserve keeping interest rates at or near zero, you may wonder about your mortgage. Is it a good time to refinance or even pay off the debt entirely? After all, your mortgage is one of the biggest expenses you may...

Monday, November 30, 2020

As an investor, it can be tempting to get caught up in daily news headlines. Consider how news about the election and COVID-19 vaccines have moved the markets over the past several weeks. But having a financial strategy can help you...

Sunday, November 29, 2020

Among the many challenges for families is making sure there will always be enough money to provide lifetime care for their special needs children. The costs are daunting: therapies, housing, medical care, and education, to name just a...

Monday, November 23, 2020

Watch as Martin Landry, Director of Portfolio Management at Avantax, provides an update and recounts the top events that have affected the market and economy in the last several weeks in the September & October Market &...

Monday, November 16, 2020

Tucked into the gigantic “Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security” (“CARES”) Act were two key changes you should know about, regarding required minimum distributions (RMDs). Both were designed to give...

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

On October 26, the Treasury Department released the 2021 adjusted figures for retirement account savings. Although these adjustments won’t bring any major changes, there are some minor elements to note.401(k)sThe salary deferral...

Tuesday, November 10, 2020

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has issued final regulations covering tax-free savings accounts that allow people with disabilities and their families to save and pay for disability-related expenses without jeopardizing eligibility...

Friday, July 31, 2020

Lately, it can feel like each day brings a new headline about fluctuating market behavior. But amid the ups and downs of 2020, there may be some potential good news on the horizon. On July 16, 2020, the interest rate for a 30-year...

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Every few months, you may hear the phrase “we’re entering earnings season” as you read financial news.But what exactly is “earnings season” and why is it important to Wall Street?Earnings season is the...

Thursday, July 23, 2020

In our uncertain climate, it’s unsurprising that when American investors are thinking about their financial strategy, that the topic of life insurance comes up.For some, it’s always been front of mind. For younger...

Monday, July 20, 2020

Weekly Economic UpdateIn this week’s recap: stocks see a mixed week, as COVID-19 cases rise, and news of vaccine emerges. THE WEEK ON WALL STREETStocks were mixed last week as investors reacted to positive economic data,...

Monday, July 13, 2020

This year has had no shortage of changes to the normal course of business.In March, the Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service announced that they extended the federal income tax filing and payment deadline until July 15...

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

The Internal Revenue Service knows that many taxpayers have had a stressful spring. So, it has reset the federal tax deadline. You now have until July 15 to file your 1040 form. July 15 is also the deadline to pay any federal taxes...

Monday, April 27, 2020

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

IRS Link : https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/economic-impact-payments

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

If you make estimated tax payments to the state of Illinois, you are required to make the first payment by April 15, 2020. Another important fact: the 2nd quarter federal payment is due before the 1st quarter. Here are the due dates as...

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Here are a few more links to help you navigate through the business loan and funding programs created by the CARES Act. SBA Paycheck Protection Program Coronavirus Relief US Chamber SBA Disaster Loan Application

Monday, March 30, 2020

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act allocated $350 billion for small businesses. It’s important to note that these loans may be forgiven if borrowers maintain their payrolls during the crisis or restore...

Monday, March 30, 2020

After a lot of talk, Congress did something. President Trump signed into law the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, (CARES Act), a $2 trillion stimulus package to mitigate the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic. The...

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Ashton and I are committed to serving our clients at a distance through Covid19. Stay safe everyone!

Monday, February 3, 2020

We are geared up for tax season and have a few things to share with you. The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act (Secure Act) was enacted on December 20, 2019. Key features include; beginning this year retirement...