Residents in California may have seen an interesting news article about the changing middle class in America, and how it appears to be largely influenced by certain demographics, most notably age. While the baby boomer generation enters retirement with some overall level of financial stability, it appears it is becoming harder and harder for younger generations, especially those with children, to get ahead in the middle class.
People age 65 and older are becoming the new normal household in the middle class. With the safety nets of retirement plans, pension accounts, Social Security and Medicare, many seniors in California can enjoy a stable retirement. Even on a fixed income, they don't have nearly as many financial pitfalls awaiting them as younger generations, such as health care costs, the right to earn a living wage and other significant financial issues having a very real and significant impact.
As seniors in California plan for retirement, their thoughts may also turn to their children, families and loved ones who will carry on their lives after their own death. These seniors rightfully worry for their children and the generations to come. While they want to do what they can to help them achieve their own level of financial security and comfort, they also have to worry about their own assets and ensuring they have enough to live on during their own lifetime.
The best way for seniors to balance these competing interests is to initiate a conversation with an experienced California estate planning attorney. With the right estate plan in place, seniors may be able to minimize the tax liability on their own wealth while ensuring they leave behind a secure legacy for the generations to come. Good estate planning can be a win-win for seniors and anyone preparing for retirement.
Source: New York Times "Middle Class Shrinks Further as More Fall Out Instead of Climbing Up," Dionne Searcey and Robert Gebeloff, Jan. 29, 2015