Upgrades to Your Online Account
We wanted to follow up on some information you may have received earlier this summer.
If you have a trust, agency, IRA, or investment account with Heartland Trust Company, you have the ability to access your account online. AccuNet, the vendor we use to establish this online account, has upgraded its website. In July, an email was sent prompting you to log into your account through the new site. This email is legitimate.
In that email, you were provided a link that takes you to the login page and instructions on how to access your account information.
How can I crack down on robocalls?
You may not mind a robocall if it provides a helpful announcement from your child’s school or an appointment reminder from a doctor’s office. But sadly, criminals often use robocalls to collect consumers’ personal information and/or conduct various scams. Newer “spoofing” technology displays fake numbers to make it look as though calls are local, rather than coming from overseas. This can trick more people into answering the phone.
Robocalls have been illegal since 2009 (unless the telemarketer has the consumer’s prior consent). In mid-2017, federal agencies announced they are ramping up enforcement by fining violators and encouraging blocking technologies. What should you do if you want to help put an end to this nuisance?
Do I need a trust?
Have you ever wondered whether you need to set up a trust? The answer is yes, if any of the following applies to you:
- You want to avoid probate (the court process of settling one’s estate). If you establish a revocable living trust today and retitle your assets in the name of your Trust, your trust acts like a will upon your death. The appointed trustee will disburse your assets according to the directions you’ve stated inside your trust. Not only is this less expensive, it’s much quicker than the probate process.
- You want to preserve assets in the case of a second marriage. When you or your spouse passes away, a will or revocable living trust can direct that assets be placed in a trust for the benefit of the surviving spouse. The surviving spouse will then receive distributions from the trust to meet their financial needs. This estate planning tool protects assets from becoming marital assets in a second marriage. Upon the death of the surviving spouse, the trust can either disburse the assets outright or can continue on for the benefit of other named beneficiaries.
Ordering Your Affairs
Ole bravely took the news
From his old M.D..
The doctor hemmed & hawed a bit,
Then said, “Just look at me.
I’ve been your friend these many years
And this is what I see.
401(k) Limits for 2018
It’s not too early to review how to make the most of your retirement contributions in 2018.
Below you will find a table that shows the contribution limits for retirement accounts. It is for informational purposes only.
Please note that the contribution limit for company sponsored retirement plans increased by $500 this year, which means the contribution limit for 2018 is $18,500. For employees who are at least 50 years of age and eligible to make catch-up contributions, the contribution limit is $24,500 for 2018.
Meet Kristen Grove
Kristen Grove is an administrative associate who primarily supports retirement services. She enjoys spending time with her family and friends and her spare time is occupied with a multitude of hobbies.
Tell us about about yourself.
I was born in Williston, North Dakota, but moved to Fargo at the age of 11. I have two amazing parents, a sister, two brothers, two sisters-in-law, a brother-in-law, three nieces, and three nephews. Upon graduation from Fargo South High School, I attended Concordia College and obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in communications with an emphasis on public relations and advertising in 2003. My collegiate studies also focused on journalism and pre-law.
Keeping Things Personal
In a world that is becoming faster all the time, there is a tendency to lose a sense of connection or personal interaction.
For example, the personal banking industry makes it easy for us to forgo a visit to the bank to make a deposit or withdrawal, pay a bill, or sign a document. We hear in professional sports, “it was a business decision, nothing personal.”
Meet Michelle Hoppe
Michelle Hoppe is an administrative associate who primarily supports personal trusts. She enjoys spending time with her family and friends. Early morning coffee dates are her favorite.
Below she shares a few things about herself.
Tell us about yourself.
I grew up on the Canadian border in Minnesota, near Baudette. I learned about life with my two brothers and two sisters from some pretty amazing parents. I also have a crazy amount of extended family that I am close with, most of whom live near Baudette.
Self-Trustee vs. Corporate Trustee for Your 401(k) Plan
Early in my career, I attended a three-day training in the Twin Cities for 401(k) plan administration. I met my niece one evening for dinner and she was shocked to hear that it took three days to train on 401(k) plans. I didn’t have the heart to tell her that I was attending a basic training!
Retirement plans are complicated to administer. As complicated as the laws are, it is challenging to learn the nuances of this industry while staying abreast of the ever-changing regulations and how to interpret them.
How does all of this tie into self-trustee vs. corporate trustee? While others may downplay the importance of having a corporate trustee, we believe it is critical to the well-being of your business and your retirement plan.