CASE STUDY 1: Age 58


Primary Goals:

  • Secure a comfortable retirement
  • Optimize Social Security
  • Minimize lifetime tax liability

Case Studies

#1: Widowed         

Linda and Bob were high school sweethearts and married for over 35 years.

They had two children and 3 grandchildren.

Their bucket list included paying for a family trip to Europe within the first 2 years of retirement.

Unfortunately, Bob passed away unexpectedly, and Linda was left to navigate retirement planning on her own. Bob had a life insurance policy that was enough to pay off the balance of the mortgage, but would it all be enough?

The Challenge

Linda would need to determine whether retirement at age 62 was still feasible or if she would need to wait until age 65.

She would need to determine if starting her own Social Security benefit and then later switching to her survivor benefit would be optimal or would she better off starting her survivor benefit first.

She would also need a tax strategy that would minimize or avoid the impact of the Widow’s Penalty that might was also result in her facing potentially higher Medicare premiums due to her projected income.

Most importantly, could she still afford to take her family to Europe when she retires.

The Approach

Linda’s first step was to engage with a knowledgeable financial planner. Having previously shared financial decision-making with Bob, she felt she needed another set of eyes and ears to help evaluate her financial options, especially those related to Social Security and minimizing taxes.

The Results

When Linda hired a financial planner, she was concerned about more than just her investments and how to handle the life insurance proceeds. She needed help with the entire financial picture, especially Social Security and taxes.

A comprehensive plan was put together that met all her needs:

  • A tax-efficient investment strategy to reduce risk and improve returns.
  • An optimized Social Security strategy allowing her to start survivor benefits at retirement and delay her own benefit to receive the maximum lifetime benefit at age 70.
  • Improved asset allocation to better align with her new retirement goals.
  • A smart, sustainable rebalancing strategy.
  • Minimizing the impact of taxes and the Widow’s Penalty through charitable giving, Roth conversions, social security timing, and more!

She also adopted an easy-to-use personal finance website, helping her organize her financial life and gain clarity.

Linda now enjoys the peace of mind that comes from a clear financial plan.

She now has more energy and mental space to dedicate toward what she enjoys— spending time with her family and preparing for retirement.

Note: The above case study is hypothetical and does not involve an actual Define Financial client. No portion of the content should be construed by a client or prospective client as a guarantee that he/she will experience the same or certain level of results or satisfaction if Define Financial is engaged to provide investment advisory services.

Get Your FREE Simply Retirement Roadmap™

Our complimentary process to help you answer your most important retirement questions.

This process will also help you evaluate our services and make an
informed decision about working together.

Get Started ➡

Join the Simply Retirement Newsletter

Weekly retirement insights delivered directly to your inbox.

No spam, just education.

(Unsubscribe at any time)

What worked for you before retirement may not work during retirement.

Are you prepared?

    We respect your privacy. Unsubscribe at any time.