What is your Plan B?

Most people have a vision and a plan for their life, both from a personal and a financial standpoint. Unfortunately, life doesn’t always follow that plan. Unexpected developments such as death or divorce can disrupt even the most well-thought-out strategy. According to the CDC there were more than 630,000 divorces and annulments in 2020 and the U.S. Census Bureau estimated there were almost 15 million widows and widowers in the United States in 2019. These situations can be especially challenging for women. According to Boston Women’s Workforce Council, women in the Greater Boston area make 70 cents to the dollar of men and that statistic is closer to 50 cents for women of color. 

Here are some tips from Financial Advisor Michelle White of CUSO Financial Services L.P. located at Workers Credit Union Retirement Planning and Investment Center.

  • Take a breath – A sudden life change comes with a lot of emotion. People don’t always make the best decisions when they are angry or stressed. White advises clients who suffer the death of a loved one not to make any major decisions for nine months to a year. In the case of divorce, while the temptation is to get the process done quickly, taking the proper amount of time to work out the details may lead to a more equitable result.
  • Evaluate all finances – Not everyone has a firm understanding of their financial picture. This includes knowing basics like where their investments are, any outstanding debts, cash flow, and what amount of money is necessary to sustain their current lifestyle. Gather and organize the necessary information before making any decisions.
  • Learn the specifics of the situation – Both death and divorce come with specific rules and regulations as well as tax information that needs to be understood. In the case of divorce, it’s things like alimony and child support. In the case of a death, factors involved include social security benefits, pensions, life insurance, and inheritance.
  • Make a plan – Figure out how much money is needed to sustain financial quality of life not only at this point, but in the future. Learn what steps are necessary to achieve that objective. This includes saving for retirement and college if there are children as well as having and maintaining a place to live.
  • ·       Seek support – Although there is an abundant amount of information available on the internet, there is no substitute for sitting down with a trained professional who has experience helping people through major life changes. Workers Credit Union certified Workers Way financial coaches can build understanding of cash flow, credit, savings, and goals as well as walk you through setting up a budget at no extra cost. Financial advisors like White can share their expertise about the planning of investments and retirement. There are many resources available to you – don’t be afraid to use them!

Life changes present a challenge that can be met with and mastered with the right guidance and support. The future awaits!



*Non-deposit investment products and services are offered through CUSO Financial Services, L.P. (“CFS”), a registered broker-dealer (Member FINRA/SIPC) and SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Products offered through CFS: are not NCUA/NCUSIF or otherwise federally insured, are not guarantees or obligations of the credit union, and may involve investment risk including possible loss of principal. Investment Representatives are registered through CFS. The Credit Union has contracted with CFS to make non-deposit investment products and services available to credit union members. Atria Wealth Solutions, Inc. ("Atria") is a modern wealth management solutions holding company. Atria is not a registered broker-dealer and/or Registered Investment Advisor and does not provide investment advice. Investment advice is only provided through Atria's subsidiaries. CUSO Financial Services, LP is a subsidiary of Atria. Fixed insurance products are offered through CFS Insurance & Technology Services, LLC.

CFS Financial Advisors are registered to conduct securities business and licensed to conduct insurance business in limited states. Response to, or contact with, residents of other states will be made only upon compliance with applicable licensing and registration requirements. The information in this website is for U.S. residents only and does not constitute an offer to sell, or a solicitation of an offer to purchase brokerage services to persons outside of the United States.

CFS representatives do not provide tax or legal guidance. For such guidance please consult with a qualified professional. Information shown is for general illustration purposes and does not predict or depict the performance of any investment or strategy. Past performance does not guarantee future results.


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