Monday, January 9, 2023

Certified Financial Planner For Government Employees

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Your Insurance Needs As A Federal Government Professional

Retirement Planning For Government Employees

When it comes to insurance, youll have access to a wide selection of health insurance plans. Hundreds of plans will be available to you, so youre sure to find one that is ideal for your unique budget and healthcare needs.

Although each plan has its own set of benefits, no plan requires a medical exam or waiting period to enroll. Also, there are no age or condition-related restrictions. In addition to excellent health insurance, you may enjoy the Federal Employees Group Life Insurance or FEGLI program.

The FEGLI program is known as the largest group life insurance program that covers millions of active and retired federal employees. Through this program, youll be enrolled in a life insurance plan automatically unless you opt-out. A financial advisor can help you determine if there are any other insurance products youll want to invest in.

Chartered Retirement Planning Specialist

Individuals who hold the CRPS® designation have completed a course of study encompassing design, installation, maintenance and administration of retirement plans. Additionally, individuals must pass an end-of-course examination that tests their ability to synthesize complex concepts and apply theoretical concepts to real-life situations.

All designees have agreed to adhere to Standards of Professional Conduct and are subject to a disciplinary process.

Designees renew their designation every two-years by completing 16 hours of continuing education, reaffirming adherence to the Standards of Professional Conduct and complying with self-disclosure requirements.

What Is A Chartered Federal Employee Benefits Consultant

If you are a federal employee, you may want to work with a Chartered Federal Employee Benefits Consultant to help you address your financial concerns. ChFEBCs are financial professionals that are knowledgeable of changes to federal benefits and associated programs. They also have extensive knowledge about FERS, CSRS, and special provisions.

A financial advisor canhelp you put together a financial plan for your retirement needs and goals.

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Tips For Retirement Planning

  • A financial advisor can help you achieve your financial planning goals. Finding a qualified financial advisor doesnt have to be hard. SmartAssets free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If youre ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.
  • You should also have some idea of how much money you will have in retirement. However, it can be tough to figure out where you stand with your retirement savings. SmartAssets retirement calculator can help you estimate what your retirement income will look like.

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About Ben Raikes Cfp Ea

Certified Financial Planner (CFP)

Ben is a graduate of Virginia Techs Pamplin School of Business where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Business as a Finance major and completed the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER education requirement.

Ben is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER as well as an Enrolled Agent admitted to practice before the IRS. Ben also holds the Series 65 and the Virginia Life and Health Consultant Licenses.

Ben joined Mason & Associates in 2022 as a Senior Financial Planner. Prior to joining Mason & Associates, Ben was a Vice President and Advisor at a respected financial planning firm in Richmond, VA. Ben also has experience working with other financial planning firms both large and small in northern Virginia and Maryland giving him a diverse background in the profession. Bens primary responsibilities consist of working directly with Mason & Associates clients in all aspects of their financial plans, with a particular emphasis on the subjects of tax, retirement, and estate planning. Ben works closely with John Mason and Tommy Blackburn in developing and implementing technology initiatives at the firm.

Ben and his girlfriend Brittany reside in Richmond, Virginia with their dog Wynnie. Together, they enjoy traveling, working-out, taking Wynnie on long walks and enjoying the many restaurants and breweries in the Richmond area.

Bens memberships and designations include:

CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER

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Making The Most Out Of Your Federal Government Employee Benefits

While you may not get rich as a federal government employee, the benefits youll earn are sure to make your life easier. Your benefits package may include health insurance, a flexible spending account, basic benefit plan, thrift savings plan, and/or life insurance. You may also have access to an employee assistance program as well as child and dependent care.

Youll find that many of these benefits make up for a salary lower than what you might earn in a similar private sector position. Thats why its important to make yourself familiar with your benefits and figure out how you can use them wisely. Examples of questions a financial advisor will help you answer about your benefits include:

  • How much of my income should I invest in each of the retirement and savings plans available to me to maximize my benefits?
  • How should I allocate the investments in my federal retirement and savings plans?
  • Which federal government benefits could save me money on my monthly expenses?

State And Local Government Employee Pensions

If you work for a state, county, or municipal government, you may be entitled to a pension. Pensions are typically based on years of service, final salary, or the average of your highest years of earnings, and a multiplier.

Each state has a different system, and even within that system, there are variations. Your line of work and the year when you were hired will typically affect your retirement plan. The key is to learn how the system works as soon as possible after being hired so you can plan accordingly. If your employer offers a 457 plan, you should strongly consider contributing so you’ll have more than one income source in retirement.

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As A Federal Employee Working With An Independent Financial Advisor Is One Of The Smartest Financial Decisions You Can Make Contact Us Today To Learn More

Check the background of your financial professional on FINRA’s BrokerCheck.

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Licensed to sell securities in the following states: CA, CT, FL, GA, IN, MD, NC, NV, NY, RI, SC, VA, WV

As A Federal Employee Your Retirement Benefits Are Complex

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Federal government employees benefits are particularly complex. We work with employees from a number of agencies and have a thorough understanding of their often-nuanced retirement options. We can help you understand your options and create a financial framework to achieve your goals now and in retirement.

If you are interested in seeing a sample plan for Jack and Julie, a professional in the private sector and a CDC employee respectively, please click here.

Our expertise includes:

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How Can You Help Federal Employees

Although Federal employees have a unique benefits package, they need assistance similar to that of employees in the private sector. Financial advisors can assist by:

  • Maximizing pension income during retirement by choosing appropriate payout strategies for employees and suitable benefits options for their survivors.
  • Providing information on suitable distribution options from employees Thrift Savings
  • Plan and Voluntary Contribution Plan .
  • Analyzing employees needs for life insurance coverage, both during employment and at retirement.
  • Explaining the importance of disability and long-term care coverage to potentially reduce risks for the employees and their families.

Repaying Your Student Loans

While not all federal government jobs require education beyond a high school diploma, many employees have taken higher education coursework and graduated from college or hold an advanced degree. If youve earned a college or graduate degree and work for the federal government, rest assured you may be eligible for student loan forgiveness.

The Department of Educations Public Service Loan Forgiveness of PSLF program allows public service employees, including military personnel and federal employees like you, to qualify for federal student loan payment reduction. In addition, your debt may be forgiven after you make 120 payments.

Unfortunately, private student loans do not apply to this program, so if you have them, youre responsible for repaying them in full. A financial advisor can help you determine if you may benefit from the PSLF program. You can also work with your financial advisor to establish a student loan repayment plan for your debt that isnt forgiven.

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Chartered Federal Employee Benefits Consultant Explained

A Chartered Federal Employee Benefits Consultant is a designation obtained by federal employees, financial advisors, attorneys, or other financial professionals. These individuals have successfully completed coursework and an exam focused on federal employee benefits. The coursework and exam content covers topics including:

  • Civil Service Retirement System and Federal Employees Retirement System annuities
  • Thrift Savings Plan

Candidates must cover other topics as well, but those above are vital for ChFEBC certification. Since a ChFEBC dedicates themselves to employee benefits, learning the most substantial benefits is crucial to their education.

Dedicated Service For Federal Employees And Those Who Serve

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Central to the Washington, DC Metro region, SageVest Wealth Management helps clients who have dedicated their careers to military or civil service. We work with a number of federal employees and members of the military, advising on a multitude of employment and benefit decisions. We also work with state civil service and World Bank employees who often share many similar planning considerations.

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Expenses And Deductions: Keep More Of Your Income

Even if you work for the government, youre responsible for taxes. Just like private sector employees, you must withhold and pay federal income tax, Social Security, and Medicare taxes. Therefore, youll need to be aware of any deductions that apply to you as well as whether you should take the standard deduction or itemize. Unless you keep up with the ever-evolving tax law, youll benefit from the help of a financial advisor to help you answer questions like:

  • Does it make sense to take the standard deduction or itemize?
  • Which deductions am I eligible for as a federal government employee?
  • How can I save as much money as possible on taxes?

How Contributions Work

Employee contributions to a TSP can be pretax or after tax. If you contribute pretax dollars, you dont pay any taxes until you start withdrawing money from your TSP. If you contribute post-tax dollars, you dont have to pay taxes when you withdraw the money in retirement. Either way, your contributions grow tax-deferred.

The most you can contribute to the TSP for 2021 is $19,500 , plus an additional $6,500 in catch-up contributions if you are 50 or older.

Both CSRS and FERS employees can contribute to a TSP. However, only FERS employees receive employer contributions. If youre covered by the FERS, your employer will automatically kick in an additional 1% of your salary, and if you make employee contributions, you are eligible to receive a matching contribution from your employer, too.

If you have the means, it is recommended that you contribute enough to maximize your employer match and make sure you accrue enough years of service for the automatic 1% match to become vested. You may also want to roll over any funds from a retirement account you had with a previous employer into your TSP.

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In The Private Sector

Within the private sector, federal employees have many options when seeking financial advice. Here are a few options to consider:

  • Chartered Federal Employee Benefits Consultants: ChFEBCs are trained in federal benefits and are available in all 50 states plus D.C., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
  • Certified Financial Planners: CFPs are certified by the CFP Board and usually in certain areas of financial planning. Some CFPs specialize in assistance for federal employees.
  • Other private advisors: There are other private organizations that can help with federal employee benefits, such as Federal Employee Tax Planners and Federal Employee Benefits Advocates.

If You Were Hired In 1984 Or Later

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If youre a civilian service employee who was hired in 1984 or later, youre covered by the Federal Employees Retirement System .

It provides Social Security benefits, a basic benefit plan , and a thrift savings plan that consists of automatic government contributions, voluntary employee contributions, and matching government contributions. The retirement benefits youll receive from these plans are structured as annuities based on your age, years of service, and plan contributions.

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We Get It And We Want To Help

For 40 years, we’ve mastered financial planning for federal employees, helping them grow, manage, and protect their wealth, both now and throughout retirement.

Simplifying your FERS benefits, and helping you make the most of them.

As experienced and fiduciary financial planners in the Washington, DC area, let us help you feel empowered and confident in your plan throughout retirement. Weve created and collected resources on this site that can helpful. If you need additional support, we are here and offer a customized approach to turning a wealth of ideas and resources into a blueprint that represents the life you want to live.

Organize, Plan, & Implement.

These are the pillars of our clients’ success. It involves both art and science. We take both strategic and tactical approaches to helping federal employees manifest the retirement they want for themselves.

We understand your finances, and more importantly, how they relate to the rest of your life, your goals, and ambitions. As fiduciaries, we’ve helped countless families over the years retire with dignity and independence.

Accredited Asset Management Specialist

The AAMS® is a professional designation awarded by the College for Financial Planning to financial professionals who successfully complete an intensive program, pass an exam and agree to comply with a code of ethics.

The program covers the asset management process investors, policy and change risk, return and investment performance asset allocation and selection investment strategies taxation of investment products investment opportunities for individual retirement investment considerations for small business owners executive compensation and benefit plans insurance products for investment clients estate planning and regulatory and ethical issues.

Every two years, AAMS® professionals must complete 16 hours of continuing education and pay a fee to continue using the designation. The AAMS® program is developed in conjunction with some of the nation’s top investment firms. Applicants study case studies based on real-life scenarios designed to prepare them to be effective in the real world and build lasting relationships with clients.

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Retirement Planning For Federal Employees Covered By Fers

We operate on the fee-only financial advisor model, which means we only charge you a fixed fee for our time and not a commission based on your wealth. Were here to help Rockville, MD with FERS retirement planning and financial advice only. We are not out to fidget with your investments or push any product sales on you.

Connemara Group offers right-sized service agreements depending on your needs. You can request a fully comprehensive retirement plan, or request advice on only select topics that you need help with.

As a federal employee, you may also qualify for a discount of up to 20%.

Federal Employee Retirement Planning From An Expert Fee

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At Connemara Group in Rockville, Maryland, we serve the areas federal employees with FERS retirement planning that is tailored to your unique situation. We know the possibilities and guidelines for FERS benefits inside and out, and we can help you make financial decisions that maximize those benefits.

You have many decisions ahead about how to manage your Federal Employee Retirement System account, along with the retirement planning questions that everyone faces. We can help you feel more confident about thriving in retirement, prepared with insightful planning advice by our fiduciary advisors.

As a Certified Financial Planner based here in Rockville, MD, our firm is exceptionally qualified to help you get advice from leading experts at affordable, fixed rates. Contact us today to learn more or call us at .

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What Is Government/military Financial Counseling

Government/military financial counseling typically includes one-on-one counseling and group financial education. Responsibilities are similar when comparing DoD and government contracting opportunities with proactive life cycle financial management services for service members and their families at the core of their duties. Because the military community faces unique challenges, such as: deployments and military spouse unemployment due to frequent relocation, supporting them in building and maintaining financial readiness is critical to their career stability and success.

Financial counseling positions exist at many military installations, both CONUS and OCONUS , though the job title varies by branch of service and/or contracting company . Remote installations that may not have the infrastructure for support services that would include financial counseling would likely house the position within a more established installation.

Government/Military Financial Counseling May Include:

  • 1:1 budgeting/spending plan assistance, to include: credit and debt education, retirement, Thrift Savings Plan, and investment education, financial goal-setting, emergency financial assistance, insurance education, and more.
  • Military-specific financial education, such as: Pre-Deployment, Deployment, and Reintegration financial considerations.
  • First Term Airman/Soldier/etc. mandatory financial education

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