Money and Finance Articles

Medicare Myths You Should Know the Truth About

If you’re a Baby Boomer or a loved one is, it’s best to know and understand the truth about Medicare myths before facing them head on.

As of 2013, we’ll have an estimated 73 million Baby Boomers in America alone…and many are starting to get their first tastes of Medicare myths. Some have already joined Medicare, the government’s medical insurance program for the elderly, swelling its ranks to almost 50 million.

Baby Boomers include everyone born from 1946 to 1964, so almost 25% of the population (!) is aged between 49 and 67. As you can see, the number of people on Medicare will more than double in the next 15 years, so it’s important to understand Medicare’s reality.

Today, let’s bust a few of its most prominent myths.

Read More…

Why Patents Don't Necessarily Make You Rich, and Other Myths

Have you invented something wonderful? Patent it! But don’t count on making much money.

Just about every significant modern convenience is protected by a picket fence of patents, and even the silly, cheap doo-dads you find at the bottoms of cereal boxes are usually patented or emblazoned with a “Patent Pending” statement. People patent anything that can make money these days… even genes.

There’s nothing wrong with that, because patents protect inventors from imitators and help us build our technology, piece by piece. And as Einstein proved, patent offices are great places to think (he conceived many of his greatest ideas while working as a patent clerk).

But patents and the patenting process, like everything else, have their myths. Let’s crack a few, shall we?

Read More…

Don't Believe These Social Security Myths

Protect your financial future. Don’t fall for these social security myths

Social Security myths abound. We’re here to help you dispel some fact from fiction when it comes to your financial future. Be sure to stay well informed when it comes to your retirement and the future of your income.

Read More…

Tax Privacy: Myth or Reality? Part II

While your tax privacy may not necessarily be the highest priority of paid tax preparers, surely the IRS would never share your tax info with other parties. Right? or wrong.

As we outlined in Part I of this article, your tax privacy may no longer be secure in the hands of paid tax preparers, especially those associated with the larger tax preparation services. It may not even be safe if you use tax-filing software. But surely you can expect your privacy to be ironclad when it comes to the IRS…?

That seems a reasonable part of your social contract with the government, but a recent measure may have thrown that promise right out the window — albeit unintentionally. In this article, we’ll tell you more about how private your tax information really is over at the Internal Revenue Service.

Read More…

Three Myths about Social Security

Everybody’s favorite retirement fund is often on our minds and in the news, but be careful what you believe. Not all the myths about Social Security are true.

One of the most popular myths about Social Security is that it’s facing bankruptcy. But in fact, Social Security is actually running a surplus. It has enough money to last through 2028 before it even starts redeeming the $2 trillion (yes, that’s trillion, with a T) worth of bonds in its backup fund.

Even then, Social Security will have sufficient money to keep paying 100% benefits until 2042. Assuming Congress does nothing about it, that’s when it’ll run into trouble. So as you can see, the truth here is somewhat different from the myth — and that’s the case for most of what we think we know about the topic.

Read More…

Tax Privacy: Myth or Reality?

Just how secure is your tax privacy these days? Probably not as secure as you’d like.

We Americans tend to take tax privacy for granted. Paying taxes may be annoying, but most of us realize it’s necessary if we want to maintain our schools, police forces, the military, and decent roads. The unstated assumption is that the IRS, and our paid preparers, will keep our tax information confidential.

That’s no longer as safe an assumption as it used to be, given recent technological advancements and changes in tax law. While it’s not our place to comment on government policy, in this two-part article we’ll tell you how the privacy of your tax information can easily be breached these days.

Read More…

Tax Myths That Can Get You in Trouble with the IRS

You never want to tangle with the Internal Revenue Service; they’re relentless. Avoid these tax myths if you want to keep your nose clean.

Tax myths are right up there with urban legends for persistence in American popular culture, and they tend to have just as much truth to them — in other words, not much. Also like urban legends, they may seem scary but harmless…until the IRS comes out of the woodwork to take a bite out of you.

Read More…