Janet Kidd Stewart, a free-lance writer, offers the linked column from The Chicago Tribune, http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-06-14/business/sc-cons-0613-journey-20130614_1_traditional-ira-annuity-roth-ira. It offers several good points about Retirement Planning.
I would suggest not trying to read this as a comprehensive Plan as such; but, rather as several individual snip-its of information. As always, consult with your own Tax Advisor with regard to specific questions about your own financial situation. They are:
In a traditional Qualified Retirement Plan, investments are generally tax-deferred and must comply with Federal requirements to segregate assets in the Plan from the assets of the company. In a Non-Qualified Plan, the assets are not segregated and might be accessible to creditors of the company, in the event of bankruptcy.
You cannot contribute to a Traditional (tax-deferred) IRA during the year in which you turn 70 1/2 and, in fact you must start withdrawing from it. That RMD (Required Minimum Distribution) is based on actuarial tables. You may, however, withdraw even more. If you have more than one Traditional IRA, the amount of your RMD is based on the Cumulative Balance, so you can decide which ones to withdraw more from. You are mot required to take RMDs from ROTH IRAs and after age 70 1/2, you CAN still contribute to a ROTH IRA.
Be careful with ALL Annuities–including the Fixed variety. Given today’s life expectancy, you need to insure that your Retirement Plan includes some Growth Potential, meaning stocks–including individual securities, mutual funds and Variable Annuity Sub-Accounts.
As always, review your Investment Portfolio from time-to-time, and when making any life changes–retirement, marriage, loss of spouse, having children (or grandchildren), etc. Be sure to discuss your situation regularly with your Financial Advisor, keeping them up-to-date on your needs, and with your CPA, as appropriate.
P.S. Ms. Kidd Stewart’s columns are syndicated weekly by the Tribune News Services, and available in some other publications, as well. An excellent weekly read.