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Retirement Realities

June 11, 2014
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The realities of the retirement metrics are finally …well, real. According to a recent article in USA Today approximately 58 percent of American workers sixty and older say they are currently delaying retirement, compared with a peak of 66 percent of people this age who were putting off retirement in 2010- after the Great Recession. Still, within four years, half say they'll be able to retire. That’s not that far away.

When asked the reasons for the delay: 79 percent say they can't afford to retire; 61 percent say they need health insurance and other benefits; 49 percent enjoy their jobs; 46 [percent enjoy where they work; 27 percent are afraid retirement will be boring. So what’s your story? I talk to candidates every day, and the amazing thing is their answers are fairly consistent with the USA Today numbers. Most that had planned to retire in the over-sixty age group now plan to stay put for another few years.

If you decide to keep working, another option is to work on an provisional basis as an interim executive with the opportunity to work on multiple short-term assignments.  It’s actually a perfect way to stay active for another fiveto-six years (or longer) if you are not ready to call it quits. You can work as a W2 employee, or set up your own LLC, or corporation, but you will be responsible for all tax filing and tax payments; a lot to consider.

Whether it’s your desire to sock away a few more bucks in your retirement account or work and spend time in cities across the US you’ve always wanted to visit, you’ll no doubt have plenty of options. The benefits to you and to a hospital that would welcome your experience as an interim executive are plentiful. You definitely need to understand the health benefits you’d be offered if your primary reason is to maintain coverage. Under the Affordable Care Act, you might be surprised to see what the premiums would actually costs if you elect to work as a 1099 contractor. I, for one, was totally surprised at the cost of my healthcare on the exchange last year when I bought my health insurance. I’m sure it will adjust over time, but I actually paid 20% less for my premiums than I did before the law was approved.

So while the estimates of 10,000 people retiring each day is still a real number (for now), you should weigh your options based on your own needs on how you want to spend the next 5-6 years. You could probably stay where you are if you are risk-adverse and just want to ride it out. Or - take a road less traveled and jump in the interim game. You will need to weigh the pros and cons of each option and do what’s best for you.

Remember - This is your Super Bowl and you’ve earned the right to do what’s right for yourself, regardless of what others think.