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Before traveling, it’s a good idea to figure out what your health insurance covers in case you have to make an unplanned visit to the hospital. Also, if you rent a car while traveling, the rental agency will ask if you want to buy rental car insurance, so it’s good to know whether you need it. Understanding how and where your health and auto insurance extend when out of town is important, especially if you want to avoid being on the hook for a big bill. First things first, though – make sure you travel with your healthcare insurance card for you and your family members, and bring proof of auto coverage. (more…)
While much of the current emphasis about scams and fraud is focused on the cyber worlds of the internet, email and social media, the telephone is still a very prominent entry point for scammers into your world. (more…)
Leaving your employer to retire early or start a business can be exciting! One of the biggest challenges in either case is what to do about healthcare. Health insurance purchased on an individual market can cost more than $10,000 per year in premiums for those in their 50s and 60s. (more…)
As Wealth Advisors, we provide advice on all aspects of your financial situation, and we work with a network of carefully selected professionals in taxes, estate planning and insurance to devise appropriate solutions that will help you achieve your goals. This article is a collaboration between Merriman Advisor Chris Waclawik and Amy Deforeest, personal risk advisor at Willis Towers Watson, who is one such member of our professional network team.
Many of us set our home and auto insurance when we initially purchase it, and then we forget about it. Unfortunately, we may not realize we’ve made a mistake until it’s too late. (more…)
This post was co-authored by Wealth Advisor Lowell Parker, CFP® and Information Systems Manager Rodney Gonzales.
As banks become increasingly difficult for cybercriminals to hack, high net-worth families are the next logical targets. These criminals are organized, patient, and in some cases, well-funded. Cybercrime is also underreported, and while the court system is catching up with the expansion of laws and penalties for cyber-related crimes, cases remain hard to solve or even prove.
Having your personal information compromised isn’t a matter of “if,” but “when.” It’s less expensive to take preventative measures than it is to investigate and eliminate threats. It’s imperative that you take the right precautions both externally, with your vendors and service providers, as well as internally with your home computers and networked systems. (more…)
In the aftermath of the Equifax data breach and many others, households have been left in a scramble to protect themselves. With all the paid identity theft protection services available, it’s hard to know which one is best and whether it makes sense to pay the monthly costs.
Furthermore, out-of-pocket losses for victims of identity theft are minimal, often less than a few hundred dollars. Retailers and credit card companies end up footing the bill.
What’s important to keep in mind is that if your identity is stolen and used improperly, your true loss is how much time you must give up to resolve the matter. Working with your financial institutions, credit bureaus and government agencies to clear the matter up can take anywhere from 20 hours to well over 100 hours. It can even take years to clear up the harm it did to your credit report. This plus the grief and paranoia caused by the whole experience is the real damage. (more…)