May 20, 2019 Herb

Carrying student loan debt into your retirement years can make it especially difficult to cover your retirement expenses.  A growing number of seniors are defaulting on paying their federal student loans and as a result are seeing decreased  tax refunds and part of their Social Security benefit withheld to repay the loan. According to a report released by the Washington, DC-based AARP Public Policy Institute (PPI), student loan debt his skyrocketing across age groups, and older American’s are taking a hit by financing college education for their children, grandchildren and other family members. Federal Reserve data shows that Americans owed $1.5 trillion in student loan…

May 6, 2019 Herb

Elder Fraud Photo Credit: Federal Bureau of Investigation The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) reminds seniors that cruising the internet can be hazardous to your pocket book.  The statistics (gather complaints in 2018 – an average of more than 900 every day) by the FBI’s internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) for 2018 reveal that internet-enabled theft, fraud, and exploitation remain prevalent and were responsible for a whopping $2.7 billion in financial losses in 2018. The FBI’s annual internet crime report pulls together information from 351,936 filed complaints of suspected internet crime, with reported losses in excess of…

February 26, 2019 Herb

It’s tax season so don’t fall victim to unethical tax preparers.  Towards the end of the second full week of the 2019 tax filing season, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) warns taxpayers to avoid unethical tax return preparers, called “ghost preparers”. According to the IRS, by law, anyone who is paid to prepare or assist in preparing federal tax returns must have a valid 2019 Preparer Tax Identification Number, or PTIN. Paid preparers must sign the return and include their PTIN.  Watch out for “Ghost” Tax Preparers But ‘ghost’ preparers do not sign the return, only printing the return and…