Halloween Safety Tips from NFS

October 2012

Halloween Safety Tips from NFS

Halloween Safety Tips to Have a safe and fun Halloween!


1. Instruct your older children to TAKE FRIENDS when “Trick or Treating.”

2. Make sure a TRUSTED ADULT, an older child, or you accompany your younger children when “Trick or Treating.” A trusted adult is a person parents/guardians have come to rely on and with whom they and their children feel comfortable. Discuss with your child who will accompany him or her and make sure you are both comfortable with the choice.

3. Accompany, or make sure a trusted adult accompanies, your younger children to the door of every home they approach. Become familiar with each home your child visits and the people who are providing Halloween treats to your children.

4. Teach your children to only enter homes with your prior permission and only approach homes that are well-lit both inside and outside.

5. Teach your children to NEVER approach a vehicle unless they are accompanied by you, even if it appears no one is inside the vehicle.

6. Make sure your children wear reflective clothing and carry a flashlight or glow stick when traveling during the evening hours.

7. Make sure your children are able to see and breathe properly and easily when using facial masks. All costumes and masks should be clearly marked as flame resistant.

8. Teach your children to always stay in well-lit areas, never take shortcuts, and never go into isolated areas.

9. Teach your children to stay alert for any suspicious incidents and report anything unusual to you and/or law enforcement. Teach your children if anyone tries to grab them to draw attention to themselves and loudly yell “This person is trying to take me,” or “This person is not my father/mother.” Instruct your children to make every effort to escape by walking, running, or pulling away; yelling; kicking; attracting attention; and/or otherwise resisting. Consider organizing or attending parties at home, in schools, or in community centers as a good alternative to “Trick or Treating.”

Have a Safe & Fun Halloween!!

Odds of Living to Retirement at Age 65

Of 1,000 Men…

Of 1,000 Men at Age Number Who Die Before Age 65 Their Odds of Living to Retirement at Age 65
30 161 84%
35 155 84%
40 148 85%
45 138 86%
50 123 88%
55 100 90%
60 62 94%

Of 1,000 Women…

Of 1,000 Women at Age Number Who Die Before Age 65 Their Odds of Living to Retirement at Age 65
30 126 87%
35 121 88%
40 116 88%
45 109 89%
50 97 90%
55 78 92%
60 47 95%
Inadequate retirement savings can keep you from realizing your retirement dreams!

Are you making effective use of your business to achieve your retirement planning goals?

To read the Full NFS October ’12 Business Briefs, please click here

Protecting Your Financial Records From Disaster

Hurricane Sandy is on the way and it is important that we are prepared for an emergency disaster. Take this time to educate yourself and your whole family on what to do in any type of disaster. Get a plan ready and have needed supplies handy if you ever need them.

Identification. If you suddenly find yourself standing in a pile of rubble that was once your home and your worldly possessions, establishing your identity will be of paramount importance. Access to personal identification documents such as your Social Security card, driver’s license, marriage license, birth certificate, passport and any citizenship papers will help you quickly establish your identity and speed up the co-ordination of your efforts with insurance companies, construction contractors, bankers and other entities involved in rebuilding and recovery.

Create a Backup Set of Records Electronically. Individuals and businesses should keep a set of backup records in a safe place. The backup should be stored away from the original set. Keeping a backup set of records – including, for example, bank statements, tax returns, insurance policies, etc. – is easier now that many financial institutions provide statements and documents electronically, and much financial information is available on the Internet. Even if the original records are provided only on paper, they can be scanned, which converts them to a digital format. Once documents are in electronic form, taxpayers can download them to a backup storage device, like an external hard drive, or burn them onto a CD or DVD.

You should also consider online backup, which is the only way to ensure data is fully protected. With online backup, files are stored in another region of the country – so if a hurricane or other natural disaster occurs in your area, documents remain safe.

Document Valuables.  Another step you can take to prepare for disaster is to photograph or videotape the contents of your home, especially items of higher value. A photographic record can help prove the market value of items for insurance and casualty loss claims. Photos should be stored with a friend or family member who lives outside the area, or in the above mentioned online backup solution. Such proof can include photographs or videos of personal possessions; remember, digital cameras and camcorders make it possible to quickly and easily create a complete home inventory record.

Update Emergency Plans. Emergency plans should be reviewed annually. Personal and business situations change over time, as do preparedness needs. When employers hire new employees or when a company or organization changes functions, plans should be updated accordingly and employees should be informed of the changes.

Make sure you have a means of receiving severe weather information; if you have a NOAA Weather Radio, put fresh batteries in it. Make sure you know what you should do if threatening weather approaches.

We’re Here to Help. Rebuilding your life in the wake of a disaster is a daunting task. However, advanced preparation can go a long way toward making recovery easier. If you don’t have your documents in order, there’s no time like the present to get started. Once you have everything in its proper place, remember to update it. If you lack the time or energy to keep your files updated on an ongoing basis, schedule a yearly checkup and use it as an opportunity to put the latest version of everything into your files. Even the most well-organized disaster recovery materials will be of no use to you if they are out-of-date. Please contact my office for your free “Emergency Planning Guide” today. This detailed guide will provide more in depth plans to help you protect your financial records from disaster.

The Importance of Planning for Retirement

Some people think that retirement planning isn’t important because they won’t live until retirement. Consider…

Of 100 Men at Age Their Odds of Living to Retirement at Age 65
30 84%
40 85%
50 88%
60 94%

Of 100 Women at Age Their Odds of Living to Retirement at Age 65
30 87%
40 88%
50 90%
60 95%
Source: 2001 Commissioners’ Standard Ordinary (CSO) Mortality Table; based on composite date (combination of smokers, nonsmokers and smoking status unknown); age nearest birthday

Not only will the vast majority of us live to reach retirement at age 65, but with advances in medical technology, we can also expect to live a substantial number of years after retirement. Consider…

A Man Who Is Currently Age: Has a Life Expectancy of Age:
30 78
40 78
50 79
60 81

A Woman Who Is Currently Age: Has a Life Expectancy of Age:
30 82
40 82
50 83
60 84
Source: 2001 Commissioners’ Standard Ordinary (CSO) Mortality Table; based on composite date (combination of smokers, nonsmokers and smoking status unknown); age nearest birthday
The biggest financial risk that anyone faces during retirement is the risk that income will be outlived.

Don’t let a lack of planning keep you from realizing your retirement dreams!

To Read the entire NFS October ’12 Financial Facts, click here.

The High Cost of Dying

There may be a mistaken impression that, at death, your assets will automatically be distributed to your loved ones. Instead, several “unwanted heirs” may step forward FIRST for their share of your estate.
These “unwanted heirs” can include:
  • Federal Estate Tax
  • State Inheritance Tax
  • Estate Administrative Costs (funeral expenses, probate costs, professional fees, final expenses and debts)
The problem is that these “unwanted heirs” can siphon off a significant portion of an estate’s total value.
The high cost of dying:
Gross Estate Administrative Costs at 5% (1) Taxable Estate 2012 Federal Estate Tax (2)
$1,000,000 $50,000 $950,000 $0
$5,000,000 $250,000 $4,750,000 $0
$7,500,000 $375,000 $7,125,000 $701,750
$10,000,000 $500,000 $9,500,000 $1,533,000
$15,000,000 $750,000 $14,250,000 $3,195,500
$20,000,000 $1,000,000 $19,000,000 $4,858,000
$25,000,000 $1,250,000 $23,750,000 $6,520,500
$30,000,000 $1,500,000 $28,500,000 $8,183,000
(1) Actual costs may be higher or lower.
(2) Based on the 2012 maximum 35% estate tax rate and $5,120,000 exemption equivalent.
What might the “high cost of dying” mean to you and your family?

To view the entire NFS October ’12 Estate Ideas, click here.