News Article | May 15, 2017
The Use of Alternative Credit Data in Financial Services Greg Rable CEO FactorTrust, Atlanta "The current landscape of financial services ignores a vast number of consumers countrywide: those in the nonprime and subprime groups, often considered the underbanked. It's imperative for lenders to better utilize information that provides them with a complete picture of the consumer, while also equipping them with highly predictive tools to more accurately evaluate a borrower's credit risk." Rable is available to discuss alternative credit data, its origins, the benefit of alternative credit data to both consumers and lenders to determine credit worthiness, and best options for future success; access to credit; the impact of regulations from the CFPB on the economy and consumers; short-term lending options and data. Website: https://ws.factortrust.com Contact: Alison Geist, email@example.com Following are experts from the ProfNet network who are available for interviews regarding Trump's tax reform plan: Trump's Tax Plan Rebecca Kysar Professor of Law Brooklyn Law School Kysar is available for comment on Trump's tax plan. Here is an excerpt from a January op-ed she wrote for Slate: "It is not realistic to expect the tax code to be set in stone. But the pillars of tax reform should be stable enough to form the basis of long-term investment and growth. Radical, partisan tax reform will prove short-lived and ineffective. Reform that gives the lion's share of its benefits to the wealthy and adds trillions to the debt runs the risk of exacerbating inequality within and between generations, perhaps alienating Trump voters who elevated him to the White House based on his populist rhetoric." Kysar teaches and researches in the areas of federal income tax, international tax, and the federal budget and tax legislative processes. Her recent scholarship examines tax treaties, as well as the tax legislative process. Her articles have appeared in the Cornell Law Review, the Iowa Law Review, the Notre Dame Law Review, the University of Pennsylvania Law Review, the Washington University Law Review, and the Yale Journal of International Law, among others. Bio: https://www.brooklaw.edu/faculty/directory/facultymember/biography?id=rebecca.kysar Contact: John Mackin, firstname.lastname@example.org President Trump's Tax Reform Proposal Robert Duquette Professor of Practice in Accounting Lehigh University Duquette is available to discuss President Trump's tax reform proposal, as well as the House proposal and the need for tax reform. He can comment on who benefits from these proposals, their projected impact on economic growth and national debt, whether they will pass, and why true tax reform is needed: "President Trump's plan consists of three individual tax brackets: 10 percent, 25 percent and 35 percent; and a doubling of the standard deduction. That would mean, for example, the first $24,000 of a couple's taxable income would be exempt from taxes. The House's version also provides for new, higher combined exemption deductions of $12,000 for singles ($18,000 with children), and $24,000 for couples filing jointly, and consists of three tax rates: 12 percent, 25 percent and 33 percent. Who benefits the most from these plans? The Tax Foundation projects that taxpayers would see an average increase in their after-tax income of between 1 percent and 10 percent in total over 10 years. However, the top 1 percent would benefit the most, with the wealthiest taxpayers seeing an increase in their after-tax income of 5 percent to 20 percent. What is the impact on economic growth and the national debt? A significant part of the cost would be offset by broadening the tax base through elimination of many deductions and credit, loss of business interest deductibility, loss of the domestic manufacturing deduction, and possibly a tax on some type of imports. All independent analyses of the proposals indicate there would probably be trillions of dollars added to the federal debt over the next 10 years. I'm not optimistic of passage of this tax reform in Congress. Even if it does pass, no reputable study has yet suggested it can help mitigate the growth in the national debt from the present $20 million to $30 trillion over the next 10 years." In addition to teaching taxation and accounting, Duquette is a CPA and has worked in tax and audit advising for three decades. Blog: http://cbe.lehigh.edu/blog Bio: http://cbe.lehigh.edu/faculty/accounting/robert-duquette Contact: Amy White, email@example.com Corporate, Trust and Estate Planning-Related Questions Michael Kosnitzky Partner Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP "The Trump tax proposal to reduce rates on business income from flow through entities like S corporations and domestic limited liability companies has the potential to cause tax inequities. However, the Treasury and the IRS have ample tools under existing law to police this unfairness. Taxpayers should look to IRS policy on 'reasonable compensation' and the existing tax regimes under the so-called passive activity rules and net investment income tax rules for guidance on how the government will deal with aggressive taxpayers in similar situations." Bio: https://www.pillsburylaw.com/en/lawyers/michael-kosnitzky.html Contact: Matt Hyams, Matt.firstname.lastname@example.org Tax Rates for Businesses Larry Elkin, CFP, CPA President Palisades Hudson Financial Group, Fort Lauderdale, Fla. "President Trump thinks income generated by privately held Palisades Hudson Financial Group should be taxed at the same rate as income generated by Alphabet Inc., Google's publicly traded parent company. And he thinks the rate for both businesses should be an attractively low 15 percent. You might expect me to be delighted by this news. I am a Republican, and we Republicans generally believe tax rates should be as low as possible. I also happen to be the owner of Palisades Hudson Financial Group. And I would be delighted with Trump's proposal, except for one thing: It's a phenomenally bad idea. Trump's proposal that all business income be taxed at the same (low) rate makes rhetorical sense, but not logical sense. To see why, consider the two companies I just mentioned. Alphabet is what tax nerds call a C corporation. It pays its own income taxes and then, when it distributes remaining income to shareholders in the form of dividends, that income is taxed again at the shareholders' rate. This means that by the time a single dollar of Alphabet's pretax income reaches a shareholder, federal taxes have reduced it to as little as 52 cents. But Palisades Hudson is not taxed that way. Like nearly all owner-operated businesses, it does not pay its own taxes as a separate entity. Instead, its net income is included on the owner's tax return and is only taxed once. This is what is meant by a 'pass-through' entity. Cutting my taxes on Palisades Hudson's net income to 15 percent would mean my income would be taxed at half the rate of the wages I pay many of my employees, or even less. And this would be the case for many firms nationwide under the proposed rules, including some much larger than mine." Website: www.palisadeshudson.com Contact: Henry Stimpson, email@example.com 'Pass-Through Rate' and 'One-Time Repatriation Tax' Michael Faulkender Professor of Finance and Associate Dean of Master's Programs University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business On the pass-through rate: "President Trump's 'pass-through' proposal asks for abuse. Small-business owners could easily reclassify expenses to be net income and vice versa. If one mechanism has a lower tax rate than the other, the reclassifications will take place. Ideally, all income is subject to the same rate at the personal level, thus eliminating the incentive to reclassify the income." On the one-time repatriation tax: "A one-time tax on accumulated foreign earnings rewards corporations that have moved operations to foreign jurisdictions for gaming the tax system. Firms in position to move profits abroad (by transfer pricing of intellectual capital), and that anticipated being subject to the tax on the differential, would see that tax liability fall from as high as 35 percent to perhaps 5-8 percent." Faulkender's "Taxes and Leverage at Multinational Corporations" is published in the Journal of Financial Economics (summarized here: http://tinyurl.com/n3bgpkt). Bio: https://www.rhsmith.umd.edu/directory/michael-faulkender PR Contact: Greg Muraski, firstname.lastname@example.org Eliminating State-Local Deductions Albert "Pete" Kyle Professor of Finance University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business "Eliminating the tax deductibility of state income taxes, while preserving the tax deductibility of property taxes, would encourage states like California and New York to lower income taxes and increase property taxes. In particular, I would expect property tax caps in California to be phased out over time if these changes are made." Kyle has served as an economic advisor to NASDAQ, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. Bio: https://www.rhsmith.umd.edu/directory/albert-pete-kyle PR Contact: Greg Muraski, email@example.com Trump's Tax Reform Proposals and the GOP Blueprint Stephen M. Breitstone Partner and Vice Chairman Meltzer, Lippe, Goldstein & Breitstone, Mineola, N.Y. A tax attorney, Breitstone can readily discuss how Trump's tax reform proposals and the GOP blueprint could affect business in general, and especially the real estate industry, from commercial, office and rental owners and investors to individuals. Among other issues, Breitstone can discuss the implications of: standard and itemized deductions; repeal of the deductions for state and local taxes and the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT); tax on business; Immediate expensing of capital expenditures and elimination of interest deduction; estate and gift taxes. Says Breitstone: "It is likely that any tax reform would also include 'immediate expensing.' The GOP blueprint proposes 'immediate expensing' of capital expenditures, including machinery and buildings, but not land. This is coupled with the elimination of the deduction for interest (all interest, except interest on personal mortgages, which hardly anyone would claim due to the increased standard deduction). For businesses that make investments in buildings and machinery (and probably for the owners of pass-through entities as well), the tax rate of 15% is mostly for show. The actual tax rate, at least for the next few years, will be zero. Immediate expensing will wipe out all income tax liabilities, at least in the short run. This may result in an increased flow of liquidity to these businesses to invest and to grow. But this will be short-lived. After the deduction for immediate expensing is used up, there will be no depreciation deduction and no interest deduction on the debt incurred to fund these investments. That means the effective tax rate on these businesses will soar." Breitstone further questions immediate expensing as proposed, as it doesn't target growth in areas where we really need it, such as education, technology and infrastructure. If you throw money at dying industries, it may only accelerate the further layoff of employees by encouraging increased automation. Bio: http://www.meltzerlippe.com/attorneys/stephen-breitstone/ Website: http://www.meltzerlippe.com Contact: Peggy Kalia, firstname.lastname@example.org Impact of Trump's Plan Adnan Mahmud Founder LiveStories LiveStories is a civic data intelligence platform used by local, state, and federal governments to make massive data stores easier to understand for the general public. The company released a report called, "Five Facts: State Taxes and Spending" that includes findings on state and local expenditures based on the most recent U.S. Census. Mahmud is available to explain what this data can tell us about how Trump's tax reform plan will impact Americans. He can use these findings to illuminate opportunities and challenges that need to be considered in light of these policy changes. Contact: Rosie Gillam, email@example.com How Reform Will Impact Citizens at Different Tax Levels Jinette Chiappetta, CPA Wealth Manager Equity Concepts Chiappetta can discuss how reform will impact citizens at different tax levels, as well as the overall economy. She is a wealth manager at Equity Concepts, a Richmond, Va.-based wealth management firm that serves more than 2,000 households and oversees approximately $875+ million in assets. Prior to joining Equity Concepts, Chiappetta spent 20 years in the tax field, with 15 years of public accounting experience and five years of corporate tax experiences. As a CPA, she places an emphasis on analyzing the impact of investment strategies on tax situations. Website: http://www.equity-concepts.com Contact: Kelly Holcombe, Kelly@flackable.com Impacts on Individuals and Business Owners Bill Smith Managing Director, National Tax Office CBIZ MHM Smith is available to address the impacts of the plan on both individuals and business owners, the feasibility of the plan, and how it may evolve over time. He has more than 30 years of experience in both the public and private sectors, including five years in the office of General Counsel at Deloitte & Touche LLP, where he was responsible for all aspects of the firm's tax practice; five years as a tax lawyer for the Department of Justice in Washington, D.C.; and 12 years in private practice in San Francisco, representing businesses of all sizes and high-wealth individuals in developing and implementing tax strategies or negotiating with the IRS in Tax Court or administratively. Smith assumed his current position more than 15 years ago and is based in Bethesda, Md. In this role, he consults nationally on a broad range of tax services, including foreign and domestic transactional tax planning for corporations, partnerships, LLCs and individuals, such as mergers and acquisitions, domestic and international restructuring of businesses and investments, and negotiating partnership and other transactions. He is a frequent speaker at national conferences, and serves as a testifying expert in the area of accountants' professional duties and ethical obligations. Smith is well-versed on Trump's tax plan, having authored the following blog posts/columns: "Key takeaways of Trump's tax plan for business owners" (http://tinyurl.com/le365om), "The votes are in: Introducing the new president's tax plan" (http://tinyurl.com/nxja73y), "Comparing presidential candidates' tax reform plans" (http://tinyurl.com/k2tytgu), and "Trump's tax plan could help businesses, but questions remain (https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/293576). Contact: Lauren Davis, firstname.lastname@example.org Retirement Planning Ed Slott, CPA Founder, Ed Slott & Company Creator, IRAhelp.com Slott is a New York-based nationally recognized IRA expert, television personality, and best-selling author who has dedicated his life to educating Americans on saving for retirement and the intricacies of IRAs. He was named "The Best Source for IRA Advice" by The Wall Street Journal, and USA Today wrote, "It would be tough to find anyone who knows more about IRAs than CPA Slott." He is the author of "The Retirement Savings Time Bomb … And How to Defuse It" and "Parlay Your IRA into a Family Fortune." His most recent books include "Fund Your Future: A Tax-Smart Savings Plan in Your 20s and 30s" and "The Retirement Decisions Guide: 125 Ways to Save and Stretch Your Wealth." He is the host of the 2015 public television show "Ed Slott's Retirement Road Map," which airs in markets nationwide. He is a frequent columnist and resource for national media and has hosted many best-selling public television specials. Through his firm, Slott provides the highest level of IRA training to financial professionals, CPAs and attorneys; and through his website, he offers free resources to consumers. Website: http://irahelp.com Contact: Mindy Eras, email@example.com Tax Planning Greg Hammer Tax and Wealth Advisor Hammer Financial Group, Inc. Hammer specializes in coordinated, holistic financial planning for Lake County, Ind., and Chicago-area residents who are approaching retirement or currently retired. Bringing tax preparation and planning, Medicare supplements, estate planning, insurance and investments all under one roof, he aims to provide complete and convenient financial solutions for the best interest of the clients he serves. Hammer trains and coaches independent financial advisors nationwide on how to build their business to better serve the holistic financial needs of American families. In particular, he has helped develop and refine processes to integrate tax preparation and Medicare supplement services into a financial advisory practice -- a unique addition within the financial industry designed for the ultimate convenience and benefit of clients at and near retirement. He earned a B.A. in Applied Mathematics with a focus in economics from Yale University and has more than 23 years of experience in the financial services industry. In addition to his series 6, 63, 65 and 26 and life and health licenses, Hammer maintains Master Elite Membership with Ed Slott's Elite IRA Advisor Group for continued study and mastery of IRAs and applicable tax laws. Contact: Mindy Eras, firstname.lastname@example.org Retirement Planning Jeff Warnkin, CPA and CFP The JL Smith Group Warnkin specializes in holistic financial planning for the pre-retired and retired residents of Ohio. As a holistic planner, he incorporates investments, insurance, taxes and estate planning when building financial plans in order create an optimal solution for the retirement years. Warnkin has more than 25 years of experience in the financial services industry, Series 7 and 24 securities licensed, has a Master of Taxation (MT) degree, and is life and health insurance licensed. He has also been personally trained by nationally acclaimed IRA expert Ed Slott, CPA, as a member of the exclusive Ed Slott's Elite IRA Advisor Group. Website: www.JLSmithGroup.com Contact: Mindy Eras, email@example.com Impact on Families and Investors Bijan Golkar CEO, Senior Advisor FPC Investment Advisory Golkar is a Northern California investment advisor that has been a licensed tax preparer since 2007 and earned the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) certification in 2013. He is frequently quoted in national media as an expert on investing and financial planning topics. In addition to his duties as the firm's CEO, Golkar provides comprehensive advice to high-net-worth individuals and families. He often creates and leads teams of legal, accounting and insurance experts to help these clients meet their goals. He also consults with small businesses on buyouts, employee benefits and other matters. LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/bgolkar/ Following are links to job listings for staff and freelance writers, editors and producers. You can view these and more job listings on our Job Board: https://prnmedia.prnewswire.com/community/jobs/ Following are links to other news and resources we think you might find useful. If you have an item you think other reporters would be interested in and would like us to include in a future alert, please drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org PROFNET is an exclusive service of PR Newswire. To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/profnet-experts-available-on-alternative-credit-data-tax-reform-more-300457597.html
News Article | May 22, 2017
Midland IRA is one of the top self-directed retirement plan administrators in America, serving clients who hold over $1 billion in assets in their accounts. Self-directed IRAs and other plans allow account owners the Freedom to Invest™ in alternative assets they know and understand. As a qualified intermediary, the firm also assists real estate investors in deferring capital gains taxes on investment property by facilitating their use of a 1031 exchange. The firm’s corporate headquarters is in Ft. Myers, Florida, with a second location in Chicago, Illinois. Retirement plan clients invest in alternative assets that include real estate, private mortgages, futures and forex trading, hedge funds, private equity, and much more. Other clients earn personal income by using a 1031 exchange when buying and selling property for business or investment use. As Midland IRA deploys their plan to accommodate rapid growth over the past year and continuing future endeavors, they are pleased to announce new hires in client services and IT departments. They are also continuing to grow the sales and marketing teams in both the Chicago and Ft. Myers locations. Additionally, the firm has refined its client services mission and model in order to provide unsurpassed professional and personal service in the retirement planning and investing industry. President and CEO, Dave Owens says, “Midland IRA and 1031 is dedicated to ensuring our clients’ individual needs and goals are met to the best of our ability. Our growth was anticipated and planned—and is successful because our staff is committed to excel in our areas of expertise.” Owens added that additional exciting announcements regarding Midland IRA’s expansion are coming soon. Midland IRA is a self-directed IRA administrator that provides service to clients who prefer to choose their own assets in their retirement plans. As a leader in the industry, the firm makes it easy to use self-directed retirement plans to invest in assets that the individual investor knows, understands, and can control. Midland IRA is also a 1031 exchange qualified intermediary with Certified Exchange Specialists® on staff to assist the unique needs of all investors. Midland recently formed a trust company to better serve clients in fiduciary matters relevant to wealth and asset management. As such, Midland Trust Company is committed and proud to act in the best interest of each client to meet their individual goals.
News Article | May 20, 2017
Over ten years ago, two brothers started an export business from scratch, eventually growing the business and transferring a tremendous amount of wealth into a Self-Directed IRA. The IRS was not too happy about the decision, arguing that while they had not necessarily violated tax law in this case, the brothers had still violated the spirit of the law. The decision of the federal Appeals Court in Summa Holdings, Inc. v. Commissioner ruled in favor of the business. That was not the initial decision, however, explains a recent blog post by Jim Hitt at AmericanIRA.com. The brothers in question had incomes that should have prevented them from making Roth IRA contributions to a certain extent, and the IRS was looking for owed income tax on DISC commissions as well as penalties for over-funding their Roth IRAs. The higher court, however, struck down the decision, pointing out that the tax-protected accounts were being used as Congress had intended—or at least, as the laws were written. The judge’s opinion went on to say that corporations and IRAs could in fact own shares in DISCs, making the investments within a Self-Directed IRA valid. In turn, the decision showed that there can be tremendous value to holding a Self-Directed IRA when it is done legally. In this case, the IRS complaints were deemed by the Appeals Court not to be valid according to the law. “Investors have a tremendous amount of leeway with tax protections in a Self-Directed IRA,” noted Jim Hitt, who authored the post. “Although there are some explicitly-laid-out regulations that govern retirement accounts of any type that investors should always pay attention to, small victories like this show that there are tremendous growth opportunities in an IRA when handled legitimately. There’s no need to cheat the tax man to see fantastic growth with the proper investing strategy.” Jim Hitt stressed that all investors who use IRAs should pay special attention to their limitations as well as their freedoms so they’re not faced with stiff penalties at tax time. More can be found in the blog post at http://www.americanira.com/home-links/appeals-court-upholds-self-directed-ira-strategy-compares-irs-commissioner-emperor-caligula/ . To contact American IRA, call 1-866-7500-IRA(472). Click here to claim one of our 7 Self-Directed IRA guide(s). American IRA is committed to providing every client with gold-level service, regardless of account size. Experience their expertise through their certified IRA services professionals. Enjoy the value with one low annual fee of $285 with unlimited assets and unlimited account values. American IRA clients love the benefit of no charge for "All Cash" accounts. The performance of the American IRA staff is unmatched, with quick and efficient processing within 48 hours. American IRA services thousands of clients and has over $300 million in assets under administration. American IRA was built by investors for investors, and brings their successful investment experience to the table, providing excellent educational material showing the public that their Self-Directed IRA account can invest in a variety of assets such as real estate, private lending, limited liability companies, precious metals and much more. American IRA is conveniently located in Asheville, NC and Charlotte, NC, and serves clients nationwide.
News Article | May 17, 2017
NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Faruqi & Faruqi, LLP, a leading national securities law firm, reminds investors in ImmunoCellular Therapeutics, Ltd. (“ImmunoCellular” or the “Company”) (NYSEMKT:IMUC) of the June 30, 2017 deadline to seek the role of lead plaintiff in a federal securities class action that has been filed against the Company. If you invested in ImmunoCellular stock or options between May 1, 2012 and December 11, 2013 and would like to discuss your legal rights, click here: www.faruqilaw.com/IMUC. There is no cost or obligation to you. You can also contact us by calling Richard Gonnello toll free at 877-247-4292 or at 212-983-9330 or by sending an e-mail to email@example.com. The lawsuit has been filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California on behalf of all those who purchased ImmunoCellular common stock between May 1, 2012 and December 11, 2013 (the “Class Period”). The case, Arthur Kaye IRA FCC as Custodian DTD 6-8-00 v. ImmunoCellular Therapeutics, Ltd. et al, No. 2:17-cv-03250 was filed on May 1, 2017. The lawsuit focuses on whether the Company and its executives violated federal securities laws by making false and/or misleading statements and/or failing to disclose that ImmunoCellular retained Lidingo Holdings, LLC to publish promotional articles designed to unlawfully promote the Company and inflate the price of ImmunoCellular stock. According to the lawsuit, as a result of this scheme, investors were led to believe that the Company’s clinical studies for its lead product candidate, ICT-107 were going well in order to inflate ImmunoCellular’s share price. Specifically, after market close on December 11, 2013, the Company revealed that the primary endpoint for its ICT-107 Phase II study “did not reach statistical significance” because it failed to increase overall survival in patients diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme. On this news, ImmunoCellular’s share price fell from $2.72 per share on December 11, 2013 to a closing price of $1.10 on December 12, 2013—a $1.62 or a 59.56% drop. Then, on April 10, 2017, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) announced “enforcement actions against 27 individuals and entities behind various alleged stock promotion schemes” that involved public companies including ImmunoCellular. Additionally, as part of an SEC proceeding, the Company’s former Chief Executive Officer, Manish Singh acknowledged, among other things, that he participated “in a paid stock-touting scheme”. The court-appointed lead plaintiff is the investor with the largest financial interest in the relief sought by the class who is adequate and typical of class members who directs and oversees the litigation on behalf of the putative class. Any member of the putative class may move the Court to serve as lead plaintiff through counsel of their choice, or may choose to do nothing and remain an absent class member. Your ability to share in any recovery is not affected by the decision to serve as a lead plaintiff or not. Faruqi & Faruqi, LLP also encourages anyone with information regarding ImmunoCellular’s conduct to contact the firm, including whistleblowers, former employees, shareholders and others. Attorney Advertising. The law firm responsible for this advertisement is Faruqi & Faruqi, LLP (www.faruqilaw.com). Prior results do not guarantee or predict a similar outcome with respect to any future matter. We welcome the opportunity to discuss your particular case. All communications will be treated in a confidential manner.
News Article | May 17, 2017
GRAND RAPIDS, MI / ACCESSWIRE / May 17, 2017 / For many, trusts are one of the most effective estate planning tools available. So much so, that it is common to see owners of Individual Retirement Accounts (IRA) designate a trust as the beneficiary in order to gain more control over how their assets will be distributed postmortem. While the benefits of doing so are undeniable, elder law attorney Shawn Weera recently revealed that there are still several steps that must be taken in order to ensure that the outcome achieved is consistent with the IRA owner's wants and needs. Almost anyone or anything can be made the beneficiary of an IRA, explained Weera. However, if it is a non-person, all of the account owner's assets must be allocated within five years, and they are provided little control over how it is done. A trust would generally fall under this category, but if it is valid under state law an exception applies, and the oldest underlying beneficiary of the trust will determine the distribution options. Individuals often choose this method when they would like to schedule asset disbursement as opposed to lump-sum payments, allocate funds for specific purposes, such as financing education or housing, or provide for children from a previous marriage. For many Americans, they simply wish to gain more control over the disposition of their estate. Any conditions the IRA owner would like to be met can be established in a trust, which would then be made the responsibility of the trustee to comply with. Shawn Weera went on to discuss a few measures that must be followed to ensure that designating a trust as the beneficiary of an IRA is the solution that it is meant to be. To begin with, the account owner should confirm that all provisions are acceptable to the IRA custodian and that they meet regulatory requirements. When designing any trust, an elder law attorney or other estate planning professional should be consulted for assistance with the language and the various complex process that must be carried out. When all parties involved have a clear interpretation of the provisions and an understanding of the applicable laws, it is much easier to guarantee that the IRA owner's estate planning needs are met and maximized. Shawn Weera, JD, MFP, is a nationally recognized asset protection expert and the President of the Law Offices of Shawn Weera. As a licensed elder law attorney, he has been helping retirees preserve their assets through wise and efficient planning for over 15 years. Weera currently provides long-term strategic solutions in the areas of estate, Medicaid, and veteran benefits planning. He is a member in good standing of the State Bar of Michigan, the Grand Rapids Bar Association, and the National Association of Elder Law Attorneys. Several times each month, he holds free seminars in the Grand Rapids area, where he educates attendees about a wide range of issues affecting Michigan retirees.
News Article | May 19, 2017
Leaving one’s job may just be one of the best times to roll over a 401(k) into a Self-Directed IRA, according to Jim Hitt in a recent blog post at American IRA. The post, "Getting Started in a Self-Directed IRA – Leaving Your Job?" examines what retirement investors leaving their current positions will want to do when it comes to retirement accounts. Jim Hitt argues that there are a lot of different options available to those who are leaving a job or even simply transferring one job to another. Because retirement investors who have contributed to a 401(k) provided by the company over time might have a lot of money built up, Jim Hitt says that understanding how to handle that money in regard to retirement investing is crucial. “If someone is leaving a job, then there are a few options available to be aware of,” says Jim Hitt. “The first option is cashing out a 401(k). In most cases, this isn’t recommended. In addition to the immediate income tax hit, the simple fact is most investors are not yet ready to cash out their 401(k).” The second option, argues Jim Hitt, is rolling the balance of the 401(k) over to an IRA or even a Self-Directed IRA. In a Self-Directed IRA, investors can utilize a greater variety of asset classes including real estate, precious metals, and more. “Typically, anyone under 55 is going to want to roll over so that they can keep holding on to all of that money they’ve built up,” says Jim Hitt. A roll over is a relatively simple and straightforward process that many investors use to keep any momentum for retirement rolling. This includes putting money previously funding a different type of account into another account of a different style. “For investors that want to control where their retirement nest egg goes, leaving one’s job is one of the most critical times to have a look at where the retirement money is and what’s going to become of it,” says Jim Hitt. To read more of Jim Hitt’s blog post on the issue of leaving one’s job and utilizing rollovers, visit http://www.americanira.com/home-links/getting-started-self-directed-ira-leaving-job/ . For additional information, contact American IRA at 1-866-7500-IRA(472). Click here to claim one of our 7 Self-Directed IRA guide(s). American IRA is committed to providing every client with gold-level service, regardless of account size. Experience their expertise through their certified IRA services professionals. Enjoy the value with one low annual fee of $285 with unlimited assets and unlimited account values. American IRA clients love the benefit of no charge for "All Cash" accounts. The performance of the American IRA staff is unmatched, with quick and efficient processing within 48 hours. American IRA services thousands of clients and has over $300 million in assets under administration. American IRA was built by investors for investors, and brings their successful investment experience to the table, providing excellent educational material showing the public that their Self-Directed IRA account can invest in a variety of assets such as real estate, private lending, limited liability companies, precious metals and much more. American IRA is conveniently located in Asheville, NC and Charlotte, NC, and serves clients nationwide.
News Article | May 17, 2017
Midland IRA, headquartered in Fort Myers and Chicago, hires new client services associate, Geoff Watts. He is to work in the expanding Chicago office. Midland IRA is a self-directed retirement plan administrator that provides tax-deferred and tax-free investment opportunities, superior customer service, and educational tools to assist investors in realizing the maximum benefits possible in their retirement accounts. The company sets a high standard in providing personal, professional service to their clients across the nation. Geoff Watts is to learn all aspects of the company and begins his position in the client services department. Watts is originally from New York and was raised in Glen Ellyn, Illinois. He graduated from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, with his bachelor of science, master’s in business administration, and a certification in HR management. Before joining Midland IRA, Watts started his career at Merrill Lynch Futures in Chicago, where he assisted customers in global client services. He later transitioned to Merrill Capital Markets on the Chicago trading floors, where he executed futures and options for FCMs, CTAs, and individuals. When asked how he felt about his new job Watts replied, “Midland IRA made me feel welcome and I look forward to working with everyone, and making them proud of the contributions I plan to make in the near future.” The staff is pleased to welcome Watts on board. Midland IRA is a self-directed IRA administrator that provides tax-deferred and tax-free investment opportunities, superior customer service, and educational tools to assist investors in realizing the maximum benefits possible within IRAs. Midland IRA makes it easy to use self-directed retirement plans to invest in assets that the individual investor knows, understands, and can control. Midland IRA is also a 1031 exchange qualified intermediary with Certified Exchange Specialists® on staff to assist the unique needs of real estate investors. Midland recently formed a trust company to better serve clients in fiduciary matters relevant to wealth and asset management. As such, Midland Trust Company is committed and proud to act in the best interest of each client to meet their individual goals.
News Article | May 15, 2017
Windmills for Giants Productions announces three new projects to its development slate. These projects include an IRA drama, The Provisionals, created by HBO alum Adam Storm; a female-driven courtroom dramedy, Disrobed; and a Ponzi-scheme drama and star vehicle for a 40-plus leading lady, Left Hand. In a marketplace dominated by reboots or spin-offs, Windmills for Giants has carved out a niche for itself by championing original series from unique voices. Windmills for Giants is owned by Liz Gilbert, and backed by a series of financing partners who see an opportunity in the under-served original and spec space. With strategic partnerships, Windmills for Giants takes writers with original ideas and ushers them into the spotlight. Liz Gilbert, who found producing by way of writing and working with other writers, believes in the promise of original content. “This is a great time for writers and creators. A lot of people are hungry for original stories, and with digital and streaming media, there’s a demand for high caliber work. Over 70% of what gets produced in Hollywood is recycled material, or based on books or intellectual property. We want to tell stories whose native medium is television or film. People want to see characters that aren’t on their second life — they want to see work that’s original, fresh, and authentic. That’s what we do.” The L.A.-based company plans to double its slate by the end of 2017. Here’s a closer look at its newest projects. Produced by Windmills for Giants and Hook Off The Jab, Created by Adam Storm This hour-long, serialized drama follows a motley crew of boy soldiers who come of age in IRA-era Ireland. Windmills for Giants secured the rights to the hot spec script, which fits its need to meet the rising demand for international stories. “The world is more globally connected than ever before. American and international audiences are hungry for stories that have global relevance,” says Gilbert. The period drama was created by HBO Alum Adam Storm, and portrays The Troubles through the unique point of view of young boys who must try and solve men’s problems. “In its exploration of terrorism and social change from the perspective of youth, The Provisionals is a really poignant and timely story that we’re excited to tell,” says Ms. Gilbert of the project. Produced by Windmills for Giants with Liz Gilbert to Executive Produce On the verge of losing her daytime television show, a "coastal elite" lesbian judge must pander to the deplorables, all while trying to civilize them, one Micky Mouse suit at a time. “At a time when the country’s never been more divided, this story is about finding common justice in the least likely of places.” says producer Liz Gilbert. "Disrobed is a hilarious, yet poignant, female-driven hour-long that gives new meaning to the phrase, 'all-rise.'" Produced by Windmills for Giants with Liz Gilbert to Executive Produce Left Hand is an hour-long drama and star vehicle for a 40-plus leading lady about a self-made woman who owns a brokerage house on Wall Street, and starts a Ponzi scheme under her sister's nose to save the family business. The series unpacks the emotional roller coaster of a person who creates a public face and a private nightmare.
News Article | May 23, 2017
Midland IRA is one of the most elite self-directed retirement plan administrators in America, serving clients who hold over $1 billion in assets in their accounts. These plans allow account owners the Freedom to Invest™ in alternative assets they know and understand. Clients of the firm enjoy the ability to use alternative investments to build wealth for retirement. These assets include private equity, real estate, hedge funds, forex, and other options besides the typical stock, bond or mutual fund offered by mainstream banks and brokers. As a leader in their industry, the retirement plan company provides cutting-edge educational tools for clients and investors to learn about the power of self-directed investing. Midland IRA continually develops this complimentary education so their clients can stay one step ahead of the rest—and the firm also ensures their team members do, too. The firm recently achieved growth and expansion goals as part of a continuing plan to better serve clients. Due to the success of this plan, the sales team has been restructured to accommodate growth and to implement continuing goals to achieve future milestones. Midland IRA is pleased to announce this new hierarchy of valuable team members, who are sure to provide a positive impact in their departments. Dan Hanlon as senior vice president has been appointed to assume the role of sales manager, as well. Hanlon's exceptional ability and vision to lead the sales team is highly anticipated and appreciated. Doug Robertson is vice president and has happily accepted the responsibility of also overseeing the development of the institutional team. Robertson’s expertise is integral to the success of the company in this area. Brad Janitz continues his role as vice president in overseeing and further developing the futures investment team. His past success in this department over the past few years is a testament to his potential in achieving the company’s goals. Dave Owens, president and CEO of Midland IRA, says, “Our purpose is to continue to build solid, long-lasting relationships with our clients to enable them to confidently make investing decisions to help them achieve their own financial goals.” Owens believes the sales team he has in place is an essential element in the firm’s commitment to helping clients reach their fullest potential when making retirement planning decisions. Midland IRA is a self-directed IRA administrator that provides service to clients who prefer to choose their own assets in their retirement plans. As a leader in the industry, the firm makes it easy to use self-directed retirement plans to invest in assets that the individual investor knows, understands, and can control. Midland IRA is also a 1031 exchange qualified intermediary with Certified Exchange Specialists® on staff to assist the unique needs of all investors. Midland recently formed a trust company to better serve clients in fiduciary matters relevant to wealth and asset management. As such, Midland Trust Company is committed and proud to act in the best interest of each client to meet their individual goals.
News Article | May 23, 2017
Police forensic officers examine the Manchester Arena, scene of a terror attack during a pop concert by US star Ariana Grande in Manchester, England (AFP Photo/Paul ELLIS) Manchester (United Kingdom) (AFP) - Children were among 22 people killed in a suicide bombing at a pop concert in the British city of Manchester, the country's deadliest terror attack in 12 years. Screaming fans, many of them teenagers, fled the venue in panic after the bomb blast, which came at the end of a concert by US star Ariana Grande in the northern English city late on Monday. Police said the attacker was believed to be "carrying an improvised explosive device which he detonated causing this atrocity" and had himself died at the scene, but gave no further details about him. One victim reported seeing nuts and bolts that could have been packed into a bomb and said he was injured by shrapnel, others saw glass after the blast smashed windows at the venue. The blast occurred in the foyer of the indoor arena, a covered area which links the auditorium to Victoria Station, a train and tram hub. Witnesses reported being near the arena's ticket machines and merchandise stores, as chaos ensued inside the concert hall. "The arena was scarily still for five or six seconds, which felt like a lot longer, and then everybody just ran everywhere," Kennedy Hill, a teenager at the concert, told AFP. "There were fathers carrying their little girls in tears," said Sebastian Diaz, a 19-year-old from Newcastle. Ambulances and bomb disposal teams rushed to the venue, as family members frantically searched for their loved ones, and residents opened their doors to stranded concert-goers after trains were cancelled. Greater Manchester Police chief Ian Hopkins said Tuesday there was an unspecified number of children among the 22 dead, while 59 people were also injured. Police believe the blast was carried out by one man and are trying to find out whether he was acting alone. The attack was the deadliest in Britain since July 7, 2005 when four suicide bombers inspired by Al-Qaeda attacked London's transport system during rush hour, killing 52 people and wounding 700 more. It also revived memories of the November 2015 attack at the Bataclan concert hall in Paris in which armed men wearing explosive belts stormed in and killed 90 people. That attack was claimed by the Islamic State jihadist group. British Prime Minister Theresa May condemned the "appalling terrorist attack" and suspended her campaign for the general election on June 8 along with chief opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn. US President Donald Trump led condolences from political leaders across the globe, as well as stars from the world of music and football. Trump, speaking during a visit to Bethlehem, said "evil losers" were behind the attack. Russian President Vladimir Putin condemned a "cynical, inhuman crime" and offered to boost anti-terrorism cooperation with Britain, while German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron also expressed condolences. Home Secretary Amber Rudd described the attack as "barbaric" and "deliberately targeting some of the most vulnerable in our society -- young people, children out at a pop concert." "The great city of Manchester has been affected by terrorism before. Its spirit was not bowed," said Rudd. Britain's third biggest city was hit in 1996 by a massive car bomb planted at a shopping centre by the Irish Republican Army (IRA) which wounded more than 200 people. May chaired an emergency ministerial meeting at around 0800 GMT. Grande has reportedly suspended her world tour following the attack. "Broken. From the bottom of my heart, I am so, so sorry. I don't have words," the 23-year-old, who is popular with teens and pre-teens, wrote on Twitter. Police were called to the scene at the Manchester Arena, on the edge of the city centre, at 2133 GMT. "A lot of these people at the concert were small children and teenagers like my daughter. These were Christmas presents for the majority of people. What should have been a happy occasion has ended like this, it is just tragic," witness Stephanie Hill told AFP. Another witness, Gary Walker, told BBC radio he was hit by shrapnel in his foot and his wife sustained a stomach wound as they waited for their daughters. "Someone came through the doors, then bang," he said. The injured were being treated in eight hospitals across the city.