Ask Kim

When to Sign Up for Medicare

[QUESTION]I'm going to turn 65 later this year. How far in advance do I need to sign up for Medicare, and when will the coverage actually start?[ANSWER]If you're already receiving Social Security benefits, you'll...

7 Ways to Reduce Your Income to Qualify for...

[QUESTION]What is the definition of "modified adjusted gross income" to qualify to contribute to a Roth IRA? I'm close to the income limit and am trying to figure out how I can lower my MAGI so I can qualify this...

How to Avoid the Medicare Part D Penalty

[QUESTION]In your article about Medicare, you mentioned the penalty for Part B if you don't sign up when you're first eligible. Isn't there also a penalty if you don't sign up for Part D prescription-drug...

Taking Required Minimum Distributions From a...

[QUESTION]I'm self-employed and still working at age 70½. Most of my retirement money is in a simplified employee pension (SEP) rather than a 401(k). Do I still need to take required minimum distributions? How...

How a Scholarship Affects Your 529...

[QUESTION]We just found out that my daughter is getting a scholarship that will cover a lot of her college costs, so it looks as if we won't need as much money from her 529 as we were expecting. Can we withdraw...

How to Claim Social Security Survivor Benefits

My husband and I were both receiving Social Security benefits when he died recently. Do I need to apply for survivor benefits, or will I get them automatically? --N.D., DallasSee Also: Social Security for...

What to Do With Old Savings Bonds

[QUESTION]My parents and grandparents gave me some savings bonds when I was born. How can I figure out if they're still earning interest? If they aren't earning interest anymore, how do I cash them in?[ANSWER]The...

How to Get Short-Term Health Coverage

I'm switching jobs and won't have health insurance for two months. How can I get coverage? --S.M., New York CitySee Also: How to Keep Health Coverage When You Leave a Job You can continue your coverage through...

How to Sidestep Required Minimum Distributions...

[QUESTION]Is it true that you have to take RMDs from Roth 401(k)s, even though no taxes are due? Can I roll over the money from the Roth 401(k) to a Roth IRA to avoid having to take RMDs?[ANSWER]Yes to both...

Boost Your Social Security Benefit Every Month...

[QUESTION]I just finished reading 6 Reasons to Work Past Retirement Age, which says that for every year you delay taking your Social Security benefits past full retirement age, you get a bump of 8% in your...

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