If you’re a senior on Medicare – or if you help out aging parents with their money matters – it’s time to get ready to shop. The annual enrollment period for Medicare prescription drug and Advantage managed care plans is about to begin, and it’s one of the best opportunities of the year for seniors to save money.
Within a few weeks, employees across the U.S. will start to see their healthcare benefit packages for 2012: They’ll find higher premium costs, more coverage restrictions and myriad choices on items like deductibles, flexible spending account contributions, vision and dental coverage and more. If this year is like others, almost half of those employees will make decisions they later regret.
Long before the phrase “sandwich generation” took hold, seniors in declining health turned to children or other relatives for essential tasks such as cleaning, grocery shopping, doing laundry or driving to doctors’ appointments. Now, a growing number of families put a price on such devotion though caregiver contracts.
What does the threat of a zombie attack and a financial meltdown have in common? For starters, you have to act fast, remain calm and fight back. That’s the premise of the off-beat new book, “Zombie Economics: How To Slay Your Bills, Decapitate Debt, and Fight the Apocalypse of Financial Doom,” a tongue-in-cheek guide to financial survival for the type of people who like a good chuckle when they’re slogging through a crisis.
The consumer inflation rate hit an 18-month high in February, driven mainly by higher food and energy prices. But few economists think the longer-range inflation rate is heating up — there’s still too much slack in the labor and housing markets.
The Internal Revenue Service has some tried and true techniques for finding tax cheats. Sometimes the agency auditors look at the lifestyles of taxpayers. If you’ve got an upscale Beverly Hills zip code and a really low income, you might be hiding money. Or, you might be between films — not every suspicious return is masking fraud.