LIFESTYLE ADVOCACY FAMILY FINANCE LAFF is a publication of DuPont Wealth Solutions and the law offices of DuPont and Blumenstiel blending original and curated content and is intended to educate the general public about investing, finance, estate planning, personal injury and small business issues. It is not intended to be legal or financial advice. Every situation is different. The information in this newsletter may be freely copied and distributed as long as the newsletter is copied in its entirety.
Well, just before the holiday season kicked off, we were finally able to wrangle everyone in the office for a team photo. It was such a busy year, and I was worried we’d never get around to it. But looking at all nine of us standing together, I’m so glad we took the time to do it. It’s a clear reminder of just how far we’ve come as a firm. Just in 2018 alone, we added five members to the team. Thinking back to my solo practitioner days, I never imagined I’d be managing so many people. I’ve had to learn that I don’t, in fact, have to do everything myself. I owe a lot of that learning experience to Mike, who’s been with us for more years than I can remember now. He has shown me just how much of an impact competent staffing can make, not just for me, but for our clients. Many hands, in theory, make light work — but only if those hands all know when and how to lift. As I decided to take on more and more help, I knew I’d have to be cautious that nothing fell through the cracks. I had to be sure that this growth was ultimately making things easier and more efficient for the people who needed our help, not just ourselves. On the estate planning side of things, we spent a long time coming up with a streamlined system that could remain flexible for our clients. Whether someone is updating a will or drafting a complex trust, we’re geared to jump in at the drop of a hat. GROWING STRONG
of things. There have been some bumps in the road, but we are making progress. There are lots of variables to consider, but our experience has proven that ironing out these systems makes a huge difference in our clients’ experience. We’ve grown so much, thanks in part to this approach. I wouldn’t be surprised if we’ve added another five more positions by 2020! For now, at the peak of the new year, I can’t help but notice the cyclical nature of running an enterprise. You get more work, so you hire more people ... so you can get more work and hire more people. It’s a rewarding feeling, especially because I get to help more people than I ever could alone. As I’ve mentioned in previous editions, I’ve really had to grow along with my business. There’s so much about business administration and management that they really don’t teach you in law school. But learning them has really boiled down to two things: Don’t sweat the small stuff, and remain flexible. I’m proud to have such an amazing team that shares this philosophy, allowing us to grow in new, exciting directions.
“I’M PROUD TO HAVE SUCH
Now we’re beginning to refine the personal injury
AN AMAZING TEAM THAT SHARES THIS PHILOSOPHY, ALLOWING US TO GROW IN NEW, EXCITING DIRECTIONS."
process at our practice. I want to take a moment to thank you for bearing with us as we deal with some growing pains on that side
Here’s to a bright new year!
Wealth Solutions www.DuPontWealth.com | Law Office www.DandBlaw.com | 1 Published by The Newsletter Pro . www.TheNewsletterPro.com
MOM REALLY DOES KNOW BEST
“Make a face like that, and it’ll stay that way forever.” You may have heard something like this from Mom’s book of wisdom. Maybe you never disputed the idea that mother knows best. But as you grew up, it slowly became clear that hair doesn’t grow back faster and thicker if you shave it, cracking your knuckles doesn’t cause arthritis, and gum doesn’t stay in your stomach for months after you swallow it. After a whirlwind of wives’ tales over the years, many common claims have been put under scrutiny. Wives tales have been known as pseudoscience and blind intuition, but even as many were disproved, some surprisingly proved to hold weight. Here are three wives’ tales that have proven to be true. Garlic Cures Colds For decades, moms have professed the healing properties of garlic, suggesting it can cure colds and help the body fight sickness. It turns out they were absolutely right. Garlic has antiviral properties that strengthen the immune system and nutrients that help combat illnesses. The effects of garlic can actually be more effective than over-the-counter flu medications. Some studies show that regular consumption of raw garlic lessens the likelihood of getting a cold, so if you feel a tickle in your throat, try a clove before you open the medicine cabinet. Heartburn Means a Hairy Baby It’s hard to list wives’ tales without bringing up one about pregnancy. Many are solely based on intuition, but a few that sound odd are legitimate. In 2007, a study done by Johns Hopkins attempted to debunk the myth that heartburn 3 Wives’ Tales Proven True
during pregnancy would mean a hairy baby at birth. Instead of proving it wrong, they found that 82 percent of women with severe heartburn during pregnancy gave birth to hairy babies. Turns out the hormones that cause heartburn in pregnant women also affect fetal hair growth. Joint Pain Predicts the Weather Did you ever look at your mom with skepticism when she would predict rain because her knees hurt? If so, you might owe your mom an apology, because there is a scientific connection. The drop in barometric pressure that’s common during storm weather causes pain in arthritic joints.
(ESTATE) PLANS FOR THE NEW YEAR
If you haven’t examined your estate plan in some time, the new year is a great time to start. As you reflect on all the changes 2018 brought and think about your plans for 2019, set aside some time to ensure your documents match these new developments. After all, your family’s needs shift as time goes on — shouldn’t your plan do the same? Depending on the form your plan takes, there are a few specifics you should go over every few years or after a major life event. Here are three things to look at.
you chose still right for you? Are your beneficiaries and the assets you’ve planned to give them still in line with your wishes and their needs?
If you have a term life insurance policy, there are a few other factors you should refresh yourself on. Beyond potentially updating your list of beneficiaries, you should keep an eye on your policy’s expiration date. Also keep track on your policy’s payment history. If you’ve let it lapse, you should notify your beneficiaries and estate planner.
it’s important to keep these up-to-date with your mindset. You should also remind yourself of who your health care proxy is and ensure they are still up to the task. No family or estate stays the same. Why should your will be any different? With a little maintenance over the years, you can ensure your plan grows with your loved ones and their needs and remains true to your wishes.
A will, which is the most common plan, covers a lot of ground and is therefore prone to minor changes over the course of your life. When examining this document, look first at the roles you assigned when you drafted it. Are you still satisfied with your executor? Are the guardians
Advanced directives are crucial to ensuring your wishes are respected in the event you can no longer make medical decisions for yourself. It’s possible that your choices regarding these critical health decisions will shift over time, so
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4 THINGS BABY BOOMERS SHOULD KNOW
As baby boomers take one step closer to retirement, there are a few crucial matters to keep in mind.
When you file your taxes jointly and your income is anywhere from $32,000 to
$44,000, you can be faced with a 50 percent tax on your benefits — and 85 percent if it’s over $44,000.
Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA) Increase Starting on Jan. 1, 2019, the Social Security cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) will rise 2.8 percent — the most substantial cost of living increase in seven years.This much-needed adjustment gives Social Security retirees an added $39 monthly, or $468 yearly, into their retirement funds.The rise will help families who rely heavily on Social Security funds for most, or all, of their income.
Estate Planning Many people might be uncomfortable planning for what will happen after they’ve passed away, but it’s a step you have to take. Creating an estate plan will
Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) Affect Taxes
Baby boomers who reach the age of 70 1/2 must start making withdrawals, called RMDs, from their tax-deferred accounts on an annual basis. Individuals who fail to take out the minimum amount of money required will have to pay significant penalties. The money that collected interest over the years without tax deductions will suddenly be under high scrutiny of the IRS. Investors will owe income tax on withdrawals based on their tax bracket, and the income from their withdrawals will be added to the combined income amount Social Security calculates. Taxes on Social Security Benefits Social Security benefits are usually taxed only if an individual has additional income, which includes interest, wages, dividends, and self-employment.
help your loved ones, trustees, and health care providers know what your
wishes are and how to carry them out accordingly. This includes any finances, possessions, and end-of-life health desires. Having a trust in place will also protect your estate from probate court and will keep your finances safe.
If you wish to know more about these and other retirement issues, don’t hesitate to contact our offices at 614.408.0004.
CITRUS AND AVOCADO SALAD
Winter is the height of citrus season, so it’s a perfect time to experiment with oranges and lemons. Roasting the fruits concentrates their flavor and makes the skins edible, creating a blast of flavor for this winter salad.
1 blood, cara cara, or navel orange, sliced 1/8-inch thick and deseeded 1 Meyer or regular lemon, sliced 1/8-inch thick and deseeded
1/4 small red onion, thinly sliced 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
• • • •
1 bunch arugula
1/2 cup fresh mint leaves 1 avocado, cut into wedges Salt and pepper, to taste
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1. Heat oven to 425 F. 2. In a rimmed baking sheet, toss citrus slices with 1 tablespoon oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast citrus until lightly charred and caramelized, about 10–15 minutes. Let cool. 3. Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, combine onion and lemon juice. Season with salt and let sit for 5 minutes. 4. Add citrus, arugula, and mint to onion mixture. Drizzle with remaining oil, season with salt and pepper to taste, and toss thoroughly. 5. Add avocado, combing very gently to not crush avocado.
Inspired by Bon Appétit
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Growing Strong PAGE 1
3 Wives’ Tales That Are True
When’s the Last Time You’ve Updated Your Will? PAGE 2
4 Things Baby Boomers Should Know
Citrus and Avocado Salad PAGE 3
The Best Skiing Destinations in the World PAGE 4
3 OF THE WORLD’S GREATEST WINTER SPORT DESTINATIONS WHO’S READY FOR SOME POWDER?
The sound of the first carve through fresh powder is the anthem of all winter sports enthusiasts. Here are three of the world’s best places to experience that powder you’ve been craving all year. Breckenridge, Colorado John Denver’s anthem “Rocky Mountain High” is about the freedom he felt here. Where there are great mountains, there’s even better snow. The ski resort boasts five peaks, 187 trails, 34 lifts, four terrain parks, and a renowned cross-country trail. After a day on the slopes, head into the town of Breckenridge for dining and activities that ditch the glitz and glamour of Vail or Aspen and take you straight to the heart of fun. Whistler, British Columbia, Canada A destination that looks like a cross between a Nordic paradise and Olympic-level runs, Whistler is filled with true magic, winter activities, and a town that captivates the senses. When you see the mountains of British Columbia, you’ll understand why they hosted the 2010Winter Olympics. The location’s beauty is only part of your stimulating experience, because every curve of fresh powder makes your pupils dilate. Once you’re done flying down the hill where Bode Miller took the bronze, head over to the winter wonderland of the old Olympic Village for a cozy night in a picturesque town.
St. Anton, Austria If you want a great location for next year’s Christmas card photo, there’s no better place than the Tyrolean Alps. Nestled in a valley between perfectly molded mountains, the Austrian landscape provides a beautiful backdrop for your winter excursions. The densely wooded areas and the bright reflection of the snow frame the vibrant town that’s just waiting to be explored. When you’re ready for world-class runs, hop in one of the 11 gondolas and zip down the hills that hosted the 2001 Alpine World Ski Championships.
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