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What the New Tax Law Means for Retirees

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The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act – the sweeping tax reform measure signed into law by President Trump in late December 2017 – is good news for most retirees. The most significant benefit for most is the increase in the standard deduction, which nearly doubles in 2018 and beyond. The new standard deduction goes from $6,350 to $12,000 for individual filers, from $9,350 to $18,000 for heads of households, and from $12,700 to $24,000 for married couples filing jointly. What does this mean for retirees? An analysis by H&R Block, using a fictional single taxpayer with no dependents and a…
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What to Do with an Old Life Insurance Policy

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As people prepare to retire, it’s not uncommon to find an old life insurance policy in their portfolio. Sometimes the policy has accumulated thousands of dollars or more in cash value. Other times, the death benefit is worth millions of dollars – if it can be kept in force until the insured dies. Fortunately, those who find themselves with old life insurance policies they’ve been paying on for years often have several good choices. The one you choose should depend on your income, the policy, the death benefit, the insured’s health, and your financial goals. Before you cancel a life…
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10 Tips for Preventing Laptop and Mobile Device Theft

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For many people, the theft or loss of even a single laptop computer, cell phone or tablet can be devastating – unless you take some common-sense measures to mitigate the damage ahead of time. It’s not just the cost of the lost device itself. If there is confidential, proprietary or personally identifiable information on the device – or readily accessible through it – you could risk seeing your identity stolen. Here are some tips to help prevent mobile device theft: 1. Don’t let strangers “borrow” your phone or computer to look up directions or send an e-mail. There are cases…
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’Cadillac Tax’ Delayed for Another Two Years

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Part of the funding bill that reopened the federal government at the end of January further delayed the implementation of the so-called “Cadillac tax” on employer-sponsored health plans – this time by two more years. That means the excise tax will instead take effect on the most expensive of employer-sponsored plans in 2022. Employers and labor groups have generally applauded the delay, but are still calling for its complete elimination. The Affordable Care Act imposes an annual 40% excise tax on plans with annual premiums exceeding $10,800 for individuals or $29,500 for a family starting in 2020, to be paid…
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What to Do After a Hit-and-Run Accident

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Most of the time, if you’ve been in a collision, the other party stays put so that you can exchange insurance information and wait for police or emergency services if there is a dispute or injury. But on occasion, the other driver flees the scene, leaving you likely frazzled and scrambling. If you carry uninsured driver’s coverage, the costs will be covered by your insurer. However, there things you should and shouldn’t do if you’ve been involved in a hit-and-run accident. Whatever you do, do not follow or chase the fleeing driver. If you also leave the scene, you may…
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As Disasters Increase in Scope and Cost, Revisit Your Homeowner’s Coverage

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In 2017, the U.S. experienced one of the most disaster-filled years in history, with tens of thousands of people losing their homes and countless others temporarily displaced. The insurance industry is expecting the trend to continue, based on climate forecasts and the history of natural disasters and their costs over the past 10 years. The 2017 hurricane season was the costliest in the history of the U.S., resulting in countless windstorm and flood-damage claims from homeowners and businesses in affected parts of the country. The number and size of tornadoes has also been on the upswing. The tornado season in…
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CoreMark dishes out awards for client services at its annual “EGPP” celebration!

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Last month CoreMark had its annual “EGPP” celebration! “EGPP” refers to our service mantra and our commitment in delivering “Excellence, Value and Trust” to our valued clients. This occasion allows us to celebrate the accomplishments of our team’s #1 priority: meeting and beating our client service performance goals. Each year, the CoreMark owners review the prior year’s accomplishments, milestones, and goals as well as present profit-sharing checks to the our service team, only if we meet our client service goals, and based on individual performance metrics. Our EGPP celebration is a fun and creative way to keep everyone focused on the…
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Technology Comes to the Rescue in Construction Industry

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While safety improvements slowly take hold in the construction industry, some firms are turning to technology to reduce workplace injuries. Owners and management have been scrambling to find new and better ways to monitor employee safety and prevent accidents as the industry grapples with growing workforces that often include new workers with little experience. There are also language barriers as the number of foreign workers entering the trade continues growing as employers struggle to fill positions. Construction, for example, is one of the least-digitized sectors in the world, according to research from The McKinsey Global Institute. But that’s changing as…
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Businesses Pay Record Amounts for Lawsuits over Employee Treatment

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Employers are paying out more for legal settlements and judgments for cases brought by employees over how they are being treated. According to the employment law firm of Seyfarth Shaw LLP, settlements for the 10 biggest class-action suits brought by employees grew an astounding 55% to $2.72 billion in 2017 from $1.75 billion the year prior. The trend in employee class actions reflects a similar trend of individual actions, which should be a wake-up call for employers to review their human resources policies and practices. These cases include claims for: • Wage-and-hour violations (such as insufficient pay, failure to pay…
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#MeToo Movement to Spawn Wave of Sexual Harassment Lawsuits

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After revelations of sexual misconduct by a number of high-power executives, media personalities and politicians last year spawned the #MeToo movement, defense lawyers are predicting a record number of sexual harassment lawsuits will be filed against employers in the coming year. The #MeToo movement has emboldened women who have been sexually harassed, abused or worse by a work superior or co-worker to come out and tell their stories. Any employer whose workers were subjected to this kind of behavior is at risk of being sued, regardless of whether or not the employer knew about the incident. The costs of sexual…
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