Our Take about the LastPass Incident

We recommend the use of a password manager to improve the security of your access to online resources and generally recommend LastPass for this use.  Some of you may have received a notice of a recent security incident from LastPass, or have seen or heard about it in the news.     Summary:  if your LastPass master password is both strong and unique, you do not need to take any specific action in response to this […]

Hedge Fund Hunters

Market Update: What just happened with Game Stop, and does it affect you?

In case this is on your mind, I thought I’d write to you about what I see as going on AND explain how/when we use nontraditional investing tools at ProsperiTea Planning. Primarily, you need to know that we are NOT a hedge fund and this does NOT affect you. What makes something a “hedge” fund? They use additional tools to juice up gains over and above the income you’d get from dividends and interest from […]

How to use the Economic Impact Payment Cards

I’ve been hearing that people are getting their stimulus payments in the form of an “Economic Impact Payment Card” instead of a check. I’ve checked it out: it’s not a scam, it’s really the government trying to send you money (using MetaBank as a bizarre middleman for some reason.) Here’s what you need to do if you get this: 1.) Call 1-800-240-8100 and press 1 for English, then 1 to activate the card. 2.) Punch […]

Insurance for Workers

COVID Relief

COVID Relief for the Self-Employed

I’m reading #TaxTwitter to try to keep up with the rapid changes happening to help the Self-Employed. The national programs are the Economic Injury Disasters Loans (EIDLs) or the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP): here is a great resource created by Sam Jacobs. I’m also really appreciating the writings of Adam Markowitz and Jeff Levine on #TaxTwitter about these programs. I think it’ll break down this way: If you are self-employed and have no employees (or […]

How to Apply for MA Unemployment if you’re Self-Employed

It’s open! Apply for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance for the Self-Employed using this link. You’ll want a guess about your income from 2019, using your GROSS income, the top line on your Schedule C. You can estimate it. You’ll need your driver’s license on hand. You’ll need a check handy to give them the routing numbers and account numbers for direct deposit. You may need “wage records”, which includes 1099s and W-2s. I’ve got them all […]

ProsperiTea Planning

If you haven’t gotten your $1200 stimulus check, read this!

Yesterday I discovered that people who didn’t get refunds on their most recent tax return don’t seem to be getting the direct deposits, even if their banking info is on file. The IRS does not assume the account you use for making payments is the account they should direct deposit into. There are three solutions: 1.) Ignore this. If your income is over $99K as a single person, $136.5K as Single Filing as Head of […]

If your bank has changed since you last filed a tax return, you need to see this!

This morning I woke up and discovered that there’s a live tool to change your bank account with the IRS if you changed bank info since 2018 but haven’t yet filed for 2019. I had someone in that situation, so I called up and got permission to do this, and this is how it went. 1.) It’s an Intuit product, basically using the front end that TurboTax uses. You have to create a login with […]


Urgent Student Loan Changes in a Nutshell

Student loan deferrals are happening, in many cases automatically! Here’s the details, but the tldr; is that loans are at 0% and you may stop paying through September 30. Each individual lender is treating this somewhat differently about whether they’ve stopped automatic payments. It’s a very good idea to stop your automatic payment when you’re being offered a 0% loan. Some people – those who are eligible for loan forgiveness – will just be paying principle for […]

Nutshell tax changes for my people over 70

RMDs are suspended for 2020! That means that we do not HAVE to take a distribution. You still can, of course, you just aren’t being required to. It’s still a good idea to use up low tax brackets with IRA distributions even if you’re not being forced. I’ll be revisiting this for all my ProsperiTea Planning retainers during our regular tax planning meetings. If you’ve already taken them in 2020 you can roll it back in within […]