If you’re newly married, contemplating marriage, widowed, or divorced, these starter topics will get you thinking about some things that will matter to you. We will help you navigate the decisions that need to be made and the financial considerations you should keep in mind during what can often feel like complicated life transitions. Learn more by exploring the following links:

Saving for life goals

Retirement is a long-term goal and an important savings commitment you should consider from the start of your career; however, it isn’t the only important long-term savings goal you need to keep in mind. Each stage of life can often bring new milestones or events to plan for.

This may feel especially true when you have children. Perhaps you are new to parenthood and beginning to realize that you need to create a savings plan for their college education. Maybe your children are getting older and you’re becoming increasingly aware that there may be a future wedding to plan, and you know you’d like to support that process. When we meet with you, we will get to know you on a personal level. We will look at your life now and learn about your current and future goals. Then we’ll help you structure your savings in a way that allows you to prioritize what’s important to you now and what you can foresee as being important in the future. This thoughtful planning will enable you to strategically incorporate all of your goals, big or small, into your overall plan.

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We encourage everyone to have a formal plan for their assets and wishes should they pass away. If you’re planning to marry, it’s important to remember that both of your wills, health care proxies, and other necessary documents need to be updated and on file after marriage. You will both want to spell out your wishes for your children and other family members. Having updated wills in place can help preclude any issues that could arise from documents that aren’t current.

This is extremely important if you’re forming a blended family. You’ll want to be sure that your wills clearly reflect your wishes for your beneficiaries. We’ll work with you and review these milestones in your life to ensure that your wills clearly state your intentions in regard to your heirs.

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If you’re divorced

Should you become legally separated or divorced, there are a variety of considerations you’ll need to keep in mind and decisions to make. For example, you’ll want to update your will and beneficiaries on life insurance policies. Divorce can be a stressful and painful time in life. We will support you and guide you through the process of separating your financial lives and the various decisions and updates you’ll need to make.

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If you’re a widow/widower

It’s difficult enough to lose a spouse. There’s arranging the funeral, comforting family members, and on top of that, considerations about settling the estate. It’s likely the remaining spouse will have many questions about funeral expenses, their role as executor, inheritance taxes, required paperwork, etc. Your John G. Ullman & Associates Advisor can help. We’ll listen to your concerns and work with you to keep things in order. Our goal is to help keep you grounded during a difficult time and support you as we guide you through the process.

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Working with the next generation

If you’re a parent, grandparent, or other guardian who cares for a child, you’re probably already thinking about the child’s future. A large number of our clients are “generational” since we often work with clients’ children or grandchildren on their own wealth management needs.

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Saving for college

We encourage families to begin contributing and saving early in a child’s life for their college education. There are a variety of ways to save for college, including the implementation of a 529 plan. Your John G. Ullman & Associates Advisor will work with you to explain available options and determine your best course of action. Our goal is to help you determine how to save for your financial contribution towards your child’s education, without jeopardizing your retirement goals. Proper planning can help ensure you are comfortably able to do both.

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Choosing a college

Every parent wants what’s best for their child. With that in mind, there are various things you need to consider when helping your child select the right college to attend. Many parents feel that there’s a level of prestige in sending their child to a “good school.” While that could be true, there are considerations that go far beyond an institution’s prestigious reputation. It’s important to consider the cost of tuition and the type of degree your child desires. Depending on their chosen field, an advanced degree might be required which would result in continued tuition and housing fees beyond the time it takes to earn an undergraduate degree.

It can be overwhelming to navigate everything that you should consider when choosing the right educational experience for your child. With this in mind, your John G. Ullman & Associates Advisor will work with you and your child to develop an education plan to consider your various options while making a decision.

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Types of student loans

If you don’t have a 529 fund, or don’t have enough in the plan to cover the total cost of tuition, you may require a student loan to pay for your child’s education. There are two types of student loans: federal and private. Most student loans are of the federal type. Federal loans can be subsidized (interest does not accrue while your student is in college) or unsubsidized. A student’s total financial aid package might also include scholarships, grants, or work-study opportunities. Your John G. Ullman & Associates Advisor can guide you on which types of loans might be available, their tax and repayment implications, and help select the option that’s best for you.

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If you have a family member with special needs, there are several important things you need to keep in mind when it comes to long-term care and the financial logistics for these considerations. The same is true if a family member is facing end-of-life issues. Your John G. Ullman & Associates Advisor can help you navigate the decisions that need to be made, incorporate the financial impact of these decisions into your long-term plan, and help you make sure the proper documents are put in place.

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