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Is Delaying Retirement a Good Estate Planning Strategy?


Everyone’s bucket list is unique, but it is unlikely that anyone’s bucket list contains an item that says “outlive my savings.”  Monthly Social Security checks are getting smaller for subsequent classes of retirees, and many middle-aged adults have little or no retirement savings, despite having been in the workforce consistently since they were in their early 20s.  In the old days, retirement planners used to tell clients that they should work until they are at least 66 if they want to have a luxurious retirement, but these days, it is closer to the truth to say that you will have to work until you are at least 66 if you want to be slightly less broke.  The only problem is that it is not possible to be sure how long your job will continue to exist and how long you will be able to continue to work.  If you are ready to face the fact that your plans to remain in the workforce well beyond your 65th birthday may not ensure prosperity, contact a Washington, D.C. estate planning lawyer.

What the Data Say About Planning to Work Past Age 65

Your anticipated age of retirement is a wish, not a known quantity.  If you ask a group of 50-year-olds at what age they plan to retire, most of them will end up retiring several years earlier than that.  Greg Iacurci of CNBC personal finance has even deduced a mathematical formula for this phenomenon.  Take the age at which you want to retire and subtract 69.  Say you want to retire at age 69; 69 minus 61 is eight.  Now divide eight by two, so you get four.  Now add four to 61, so you get 65.  Iacurci says that you will most likely retire at age 65.  Therefore, you should base all your financial plans on making it halfway from your 61st birthday to your anticipated retirement date.

Not all early retirements are alike.  Only one third of people who retire earlier than their originally anticipated retirement age do so because they were able to build up more savings than they expected, making an earlier retirement financially feasible.  Another third retire earlier because of health issues, and the last third do so because of job layoffs.  The worse news is that only 10 percent of the gray-haired bearers of pink slips are able to find jobs that pay as much as their previous jobs.  Most of them stay in the workforce part time; the lucky few who are able to find new full-time jobs find jobs that pay less than their former employers paid.  Age discrimination stinks, and you have the right to sue if your employer fires you because of your age.  Meanwhile, you should also make financial plans based on the assumption that how long you stay in the workforce is not entirely within your control.

Contact Tobin O’Connor Ewing About Estate Planning for Industrious Seniors

A Washington, D.C. estate planning attorney can help you if you must retire sooner than you had hoped.  Contact Tobin, O’Connor, and Ewing in Washington, D.C. or call 202-362-5900.



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