Goddard Financial Planning remains “open for business” albeit in new configurations with the team working remotely. We are busily working with clients who need help navigating the current landscape. Note that currently e mail is our preferred means of communication. While we strive to respond to client inquiries within 24 hours, that is not always possible based on our workloads. We appreciate your patience and understanding in this unique time.

We wanted to communicate with clients about the recent Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Recovery Act (CARES), which was passed into law on March 27, 2020. While the changes cover a broad array of topics, here are several items we think could have the largest impact on our clients:

Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) Waived for 2020

We expect this provision to impact a significant number of clients. 2020 RMDs are waived for IRAs and most 401(k)/403(b)/457 plans. This also applies to Inherited IRA RMDs. If you have already taken your 2020 RMD from an employer-provided plan, it may be possible to roll back the distribution if you don’t need the money. This roll back feature does not apply to an inherited IRA Required Minimum Distribution.

Small Business Owners may be eligible for loans through the Paycheck Protection Program

If you qualify as a small business owner, you may be eligible for various programs including the Paycheck Protection Program. A business is eligible if it has less than 500 employees and it can also include independent contractors and sole proprietors. The maximum loan amount is 2.5 times your average monthly payroll costs for the previous year. If you are interested in learning more, visit the Small Business Association website or inquire with your current bank. This provision is time-sensitive, and we encourage you to apply as soon as possible.

Stimulus payments

Stimulus payments will be coming to some of our clients and are based on the adjusted gross income on your most recent tax return. Payments of $1,200 (single/head of household filers) and $2,400 (joint filers) will be sent to eligible taxpayers. An additional $500 payment is made for each dependent child. Payments begin decreasing if the AGI on your tax return exceeded $75,000 (single), $112,500 (HOH), or $150,000 (joint). The payments will be sent automatically, so if you are eligible, there is nothing you need to do in order to receive the payment.

Some retirement plan distributions for COVID-19 related reasons are not subject to penalty

Distributions from qualified retirement plans (such as IRAs, 401(k)s, 403(b)s and 457s) received during 2020 of up to $100,000 for COVID-19 related purposes are allowed without a 10% penalty for pre-59 ½ distributions. These distributions will be taxed evenly over 3 years beginning with year of distribution and may be recontributed within 3 years. Related purposes include a COVID-19 diagnosis for you, your spouse or dependent, and financial hardship as a result of business closures, reduced work hours, lay off, furlough, lack of childcare or other factors as determined by the Treasury.

y to evaluate whether any of these changes might impact your plans immediately or as part of your next Annual Review meeting. Consider the information in this newsletter to be an initial interpretation of the CARES law and not personalized advice.

If you have any questions or would like to set up a meeting, please reach out to info@goddardfinancialplanning.com.