Home » Articles posted by Ashley Hickman

Author Archives: Ashley Hickman

February 2024

Tax Consequences of Life Insurance

Typically, only people listed as beneficiaries can claim life insurance. They can be a single person or an entity such as a trust.Life Insurance

Purchasing life insurance can give you peace of mind, knowing that your loved ones will not have financial hardship after your death. A financial professional can help you determine the best coverage options for you.

The financial security and peace of mind that life insurance provides is invaluable. For families, it can cover funeral expenses and debts, allowing loved ones to pay off mortgages and other financial obligations and carry on with their lives without worrying about paying the bills. Often, it can even help to provide an income in the event of the policyholder’s death.

Life insurance is a contract between the insured (also known as the policyholder) and an insurer, whereby the latter agrees to pay a sum of money (known as the “death benefit”) to beneficiaries upon the insured’s death. These beneficiaries can be one or more individuals, a trust, an estate, or other entities. The policyholder chooses their beneficiary(ies) when they purchase the policy.

There are many different life insurance policies available, and the best option for you depends on your individual circumstances. A qualified life insurance professional can help you assess your risk tolerance, lifestyle, and long-term goals to find a policy that is right for you. They can also explain the various options and cost structures of each type of life insurance, so you can make an informed decision.

When choosing a life insurance policy, it is important to select a reputable company with a good track record of customer service and financial stability. You should be able to find out information about each company’s credit rating and complaint index through the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. In addition, you should always ask for a quote from more than one company and compare prices before selecting a policy.

The costs of life insurance can vary significantly, depending on a variety of factors, including the type of policy, coverage amount, and the age and health of the applicant. In some cases, an insurance company may require a medical exam before issuing a policy. However, there are several ways to obtain life insurance if you have a preexisting condition or if you are unable to pass a medical examination. For example, you can purchase a guaranteed issue policy or get life insurance through your employer or a group to which you belong.


The tax consequences of life insurance are complex, and vary depending on a variety of factors. Whether you’re the owner of a permanent policy with cash value, or the beneficiary of one, there are many situations that may affect your tax liability. We’re here to help you understand the nuances of how life insurance is taxed, and how you can avoid any unexpected surprises when it comes time to pay your taxes.

As a general rule, death benefits paid out from life insurance are not considered gross income and do not have to be reported on your tax return. This is true for both term and permanent life insurance policies. The only exception is if the policy is used as a loan, in which case the imputed cost of coverage must be included in income. This is typically the case for group life insurance policies provided by employers.

Life insurance policies with cash values have the added benefit of tax-deferred growth. This means that any investment gains on the policy’s cash value are not taxable until they are withdrawn or sold. This is a great feature for those who fall into higher tax brackets and would otherwise face significant taxation on investments.

The only time a life insurance policy’s cash value is taxable is when the owner withdraws more than their “cost basis.” This amount is determined by subtracting the original premium payments from the total amount of money accumulated in the policy. The taxable amount is the difference between this number and the death benefit received.

Some situations that could trigger a taxable withdrawal include if the policy is transferred in a “transfer-for-value” arrangement, or when it is exchanged for another type of investment (i.e. an annuity or long term care insurance). It is important to consult with your personal tax or legal advisors when deciding on any life insurance transfers.

In addition, it’s also worth noting that some states have inheritance or estate taxes, which could potentially impact the proceeds of a life insurance policy. It is always advisable to consult your tax, legal and accounting advisors for specific guidance on your situation.

Family Expenses

The death benefit from life insurance can help your loved ones pay for funeral expenses, debts and other final costs. In addition, it can provide a source of income to family members who rely on your wages. The money can also cover mortgage payments and children’s college tuition. In addition, the amount you receive from a policy is generally not subject to federal taxes.

A common rule of thumb is that you should get a life insurance policy worth about 10 times your annual salary. However, the exact amount you need to buy depends on your financial goals and other resources, such as existing life insurance, 401ks, 529 college savings accounts and other assets. It’s important to regularly review your policies to ensure they are up to date and that you have the appropriate beneficiaries listed. Life events, such as a new baby or a divorce, may indicate that you need to increase your coverage.

If you’re employed, chances are your employer offers life insurance through payroll deductions. You can also purchase a standalone policy or use a life insurance calculator to determine the right amount of coverage for your family. It’s essential to keep in mind that the death benefit from your policy won’t be available immediately, and it can take a while for the company to process the payout.

The main purpose of life insurance is to provide your family with a financial safety net in the event of your death. This will give them the ability to meet all their expenses without worrying about how they will pay the bills. If you’re thinking about buying life insurance, you should consult a financial planner to find out which type of policy is best for you. The professional can also help you determine how much life insurance you need by calculating your family’s current living expenses, outstanding debt and other expenses. They can also take into account your lifestyle, health and risk factors, such as a history of dangerous hobbies or occupations, to help you choose the right coverage for your needs.


One of the greatest benefits of life insurance is that it can provide a large sum of money for your beneficiaries, without them having to pay income tax on it. In addition, it may also help avoid estate taxes. Estate taxes are federal taxes that can be levied on your estate after your death. These taxes can be a significant burden for your family, especially if your estate is large. However, your life insurance policy may be used to pay these taxes, leaving a larger inheritance for your beneficiaries.

Beneficiaries can receive the life insurance payout in a lump sum or in installments, depending on the type of policy you have. They can use the money for a variety of purposes, including paying off debts and providing financial security for their families.

If your beneficiaries are minors, you can set up a trust to manage the life insurance payout for them. The trustee is responsible for disbursing the funds according to your guidelines. This helps to ensure that the funds are managed properly and do not disappear.

Another benefit of life insurance is that it can be used to equalize an estate inheritance among heirs. For example, let’s say you own a business and want to leave it to your children after your death. You can purchase a life insurance policy with a value approximating that of your business. This allows you to transfer your ownership interest in the business without incurring estate taxes.

In addition, life insurance can be used to pay for a charitable contribution. You can designate your life insurance payout to a charity, which will receive the proceeds tax-free. This can be a great way to make a substantial charitable donation that will provide a significant benefit to your community.

It is important to regularly review your life insurance beneficiaries and policy details to ensure that all information is accurate and up to date. Also, it is a good idea to consult with a financial planner or attorney to discuss your estate planning goals. They can help you design a comprehensive strategy that will leverage your life insurance for maximum benefits to your beneficiaries.

The Importance of Car Maintenance

Performing routine car maintenance is one of the best ways to extend the life of your vehicle and maximize its value. It also enables you to drive safer, reduce fuel costs, and minimize environmental pollution.Car Maintenance

Visually inspect the body for blistered paint and rust. Feel the rubber hoses, checking that they are firm and supple. Check the fluids, including transmission and power-steering fluids, looking for a pinkish color and a fresh odor.

Car maintenance is a key to longevity and the overall value of a vehicle. The most common repair costs are due to accidents, but good car maintenance can limit or even eliminate those expenses. Car maintenance also includes oil changes, air filter replacements, fluid checks, and other routine tasks that will keep a vehicle running at its best.

The owner’s manual has a section for scheduled maintenance and will provide recommended intervals based on driving conditions. Many car owners choose to get the oil changed every three months, using either conventional or synthetic oil depending on budget requirements and driving habits. Other basic maintenance items include replacing windshield wipers and checking the tire pressure on a regular basis. It is also a good idea to carry a small set of tools in your vehicle to fix minor issues such as flat tires.

Many vehicle components experience significant wear and tear, and savvy car owners can identify signs of problems. Some, such as a loose headlight or faulty brakes, are obvious and require immediate attention. Other problems are less apparent, such as a low power steering fluid level or an unusual smell. A sluggish engine may indicate that it is time to change the spark plugs.

Some of the things that car owners can do on their own are very inexpensive and will extend the life of the vehicle. For example, most cars need a new air filter approximately every twelve months. These cost about ten dollars and are easy to install, but will make a big difference in engine performance. Other inexpensive but important maintenance items include changing the wiper blades and replacing them with a higher quality pair.

Other routine car maintenance items that should be done on a regular basis include replacing the serpentine belt and other belts in the engine compartment when they begin to look glazed or cracked. Checking the coolant and other liquid levels is important as well, especially before a long trip. It is also a good idea to visually inspect the lights on the vehicle, such as fog lights and turn signals.


Keeping up with your car’s maintenance schedule can keep it running at peak performance for longer. It can also prevent problems from developing that would otherwise lead to a costly breakdown, helping to preserve the value of your vehicle.

In addition, regular car care can help you get better gas mileage by ensuring that all of the systems are functioning properly and working as efficiently as possible. This is especially true for the engine, which can benefit from oil changes and other routine servicing that help to remove dirt, debris, and other contaminants from its internal components.

The simplest way to make your car last longer is to avoid skipping any major services that the manufacturer recommends, and to nip things in the bud when you notice unusual noises or warning lights on the dashboard. It may be tempting to ignore those indicators, but doing so can be dangerous and expensive. A rattle today could turn into a snapped timing belt tomorrow. It’s much cheaper to spend a few hundred dollars on repairs now than to risk the headache and expense of paying for a replacement in the future.

A well-maintained car will also be more likely to attract a higher offer from dealerships or private buyers, if you’re planning on selling your vehicle in the future. In many cases, this is enough of an incentive to make car care a priority for drivers.

Maintaining your vehicle can seem like a hassle or unnecessary expense at times, but it’s worth the investment in both your wallet and your car. It can reduce the risk of expensive repair bills, save you from the stress and inconvenience that comes with a car breakdown, and even protect your car’s resale value. It’s a great way to unlock longevity from your ride!


When you follow the recommended maintenance schedule, you’ll build up a comprehensive maintenance log. This record is valuable when it comes time to sell your car, as potential buyers will want to see that the vehicle was properly maintained. A well-maintained car has fewer mechanical issues and is more reliable than one that is neglected.

There are many factors that go into determining the reliability of a car. Some of the most important are the engine, transmission, and electrical system. A vehicle with a weak or unreliable engine will have to be taken in for repairs more frequently, and will be less dependable overall. A transmission that has frequent problems is also unreliable, as it will cause the vehicle to be jerky and difficult to drive.

Most major automotive magazines, consumer organizations, and government agencies publish car reliability ratings. These rankings are based on a wide range of data, including customer surveys, repair costs, and safety reports. These ratings are intended to help you identify cars that are most dependable for your needs.

Different organizations use slightly different criteria to determine their reliability rankings. Some rank vehicles based on specific components, while others look at how often certain models experience problems in general. Some rankings may also factor in the average age and mileage of the cars in their sample.

If you are looking for a car to buy, it is helpful to compare the reliability ratings of various makes and models. To do this, you can use online resources like RepairPal, which provides information about the cost and frequency of unscheduled repairs for different models.

The RepairPal Reliability Rating is based on the number of times a vehicle goes in for unscheduled repairs and maintenance over a year. This metric was calculated by tracking millions of unique cars and using advanced predictive data science. Controls were included to ensure that small routine visits to the shop such as oil changes did not influence the results.

The top-rated car for reliability is Toyota, with a score of 9 out of 10. Other top-rated models include the Honda Civic and the Ford Fusion. The least-reliable cars were the Mitsubishi Lancer, Volkswagen Golf, and Nissan Sentra.


While car repairs are necessary, good preventative maintenance can often mean a much lower risk of car damage. This can save money in terms of potential repairs, and also add to the value of a vehicle. In fact, Toyota has been named Kelley Blue Book’s Best Resale Value Brand three years in a row. This is because maintaining a car’s original condition helps to prolong its life and maintain its resale value.

When cars are maintained properly, it reduces their energy consumption and emissions. This is beneficial for the environment, as it reduces harmful gases released into the air. In addition, it can help reduce fuel costs. A few simple tasks can help with this, such as replacing the car’s air filter and making sure to have windshield wipers that are in working condition. These can both be done for about ten dollars and will save you from paying a lot of money at the pump.

Car maintenance can also help a vehicle look better and run more smoothly. It can even increase the resale value and make the vehicle more attractive to potential buyers. This is because the buyer will be able to see that the vehicle has been well-maintained. This will make them more likely to pay the asking price for the vehicle.

In addition, car maintenance can keep the resale value high by helping to preserve the integrity of a vehicle’s structure. For example, regular oil changes can prevent rust and corrosion. It can also help prevent the engine from burning out prematurely. In addition, maintaining proper tire pressure can extend the life of tires.

Performing car maintenance is important, but many people tend to neglect it due to the many other obligations they have. As a result, they may end up with costly repairs later on down the road. If you’re serious about keeping your car in its original condition, be sure to follow the recommended maintenance schedule and take the time to complete some of the smaller tasks that could help it last longer. For example, replacing your air filters, adding washer fluid, or checking your tire pressure can all be easily accomplished by yourself and will help ensure that your vehicle continues to function properly for a long time.

The Different Types of Asphalt Paving

Asphalt Paving Charleston SC is a type of pavement made from hot asphalt cement mixed with aggregates. Once the mixture has cooled and hardened, it becomes the familiar asphalt we know and love. This material is often laid as a base mix, with the largest stones no larger than 3/8 inch. It is then laid at a minimum depth of two inches.Asphalt Paving

Hot mix asphalt paving is a process in which a mixture of asphalt and stone is laid over a porous base. This type of base is called an open-graded friction course and is much smoother than dense-graded asphalt. The materials used in the process are usually obtained from nearby asphalt plants and should be transported by truck. Before laying the asphalt, the base must be prepared for milling, and a non-petroleum product should be added to the truck bed.

This mix is the most common type of asphalt. It has great durability and impermeable properties. The mix can be coarse-graded or fine-graded, depending on the aggregates used. It is ideal for a variety of purposes, including structural, friction, and leveling applications. However, it is more expensive than the other two types of asphalt.

In the States, state transportation agencies spend millions of dollars on roads and pavements. The most common material used is Hot Mix Asphalt. It is a mixture of aggregates, bituminous material, liquid petroleum binders, and additives. Hot mix asphalt is durable and flexible and is often used for heavy-traffic areas. There are many steps involved in the process, and it requires careful inspection and oversight to ensure the contractor is performing the job correctly and within specifications.

The process of paving hot mix asphalt requires a thorough understanding of the process, equipment, and installation. It is vital for any contractor to know the material’s properties, including the proper thickness and compaction. In addition, contractors need to be familiar with the contract requirements and material tests, as well as the proper documentation and payment for their work.

Ultra-Thin Asphalt Paving is a cost-effective way to protect and maintain roads. It is an asphalt paving technology that improves ride quality and reduces traffic noise. It is a good choice for roads that show signs of aging and oxidation.

Ultra-Thin Asphalt Paving can be applied to both rigid and flexible pavements. However, it is important to repair cracks in the existing pavement before applying this type of pavement. This preventive maintenance treatment can increase the life of existing pavements by up to 6-17 years. In addition, it can be used to repair deficient surfaces and increase surface friction.

Ultra-Thin Asphalt Paving can be a good option for roads that receive heavy truck traffic. This type of asphalt consists of a mixture of open-graded aggregates, a rubberized asphalt layer, and an ultra-thin layer of asphalt. It is a popular choice for highway pavements due to its durability and smooth texture.

The quality of the existing pavement will determine the lifespan of the Ultra-Thin Asphalt Paving over it. Depending on the traffic and climate, the binder content can range from 5% to 6%. The thickness of the asphalt overlay will also determine how long it will last.

The compaction process is important for the durability of asphalt mixtures. The compaction temperature must be low enough to prevent the mixture from degrading. If the compaction temperature is too high, air voids will develop and reduce the service life of the new asphalt. This will ultimately reduce the pavement’s overall strength.

Coal tar is a type of sealant that is commonly used in asphalt paving. However, contractors may be wary of this type of sealer because it is not as forgiving as asphalt sealers. In addition, asphalt-based sealants are safer than coal tar sealers, as they do not release harmful polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), which are released by burning coal, oil, trash, and other materials.