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Author: misterfeathers Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 85  
Subject: Confused about retirement strategies Date: 6/24/2004 10:51 PM
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I apologize in advance for the length of this post and for posting the same message on many boards. I wasn't sure of the right place.

I am a 61 year old physician looking to retire at around age 65. I am trying to decide where to invest a sum of money (over and above my defined benefit pension plan). The amount will be between $100,000 and $200,000 per year for the rest of my working life. I also have a $1,000,000 term life policy that runs until age 79. It costs me around $10,000/year. I have several considerations:

1. Asset protection
2. Tax savings current and upon death
3. Availability of money

I have been presented with the following alternatives with their related pros and cons (as I see it).

1. Second to die variable or fixed life insurance policy
Pros: Can borrow tax free from the policy
Asset protected
Cons: Must be some high insurance cost built in for insurance that I don't really need or want.
Very confusing and non-transparent as to costs involved.
Questions: Do you think the insurance costs are offset by the tax free nature of the borrowings? I suspect not.
I have been told that getting a policy like this at my age is a very bad idea because of the insurance cost.

2. Annuity (fixed or variable)
Pros: Asset protected
Fixed is safe
Cons: High costs
Fixed yields are very low
Low flexibility due to surrender charges
Questions: Once fully funded and payments have started, do they stop the day of my death? My wife's death? What if we both die on the first day? Is the money just lost?

3. Family Limited Partnership
Pros: Asset protected (with some caveats)
Complete flexibility as to investment choices
Cons: Hassle to administer
Expensive to set up
Phantom income tax to be paid by my children
Questions: It is my understanding that if someone gets a judgement against me, then he does not get anything until the partnership makes a distribution and that he must pay tax on phantom income that he never receives. The question is, how do I get money out if I need it to live on if there is this judgement hanging out there? I am leaning in this direction.

4. Asset transfer between me and my spouse. Basically I get things that are already protected and she gets the rest.
Pros: Asset protection
Fairly easy to do
Cons: Problems if divorce
Questions: Is this a good strategy?

I have tried to explain as much as I can without writing a book. I am extremely confused as to what to do and would really appreciate any advice on the matter. Perhaps there are some other alternatives that I have yet to consider.

Thank you very much for your advice.
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