Laurel Tree Advisors
Assistant Portfolio Manager
Alexander (Alex) Rupert is an Assistant Portfolio Manager at Laurel Tree Advisors. Alex joined the firm while earning his Bachelor of Business Administration degree focusing on Finance. He graduated from the University of Akron and joined Laurel Tree Advisors in his current role in 2014.
Alex is very active on the firm’s investment research committee, providing in-depth reports on securities and economic topics. He also reviews and analyzes investment portfolios as well as preparation and presentation of financial plans. He has developed multiple templates and tools that streamline portfolio allocation and apply investment research that the company currently uses in their business processes. Maintenance of the company website, social media and other various technological tasks are part of Alex’s routine.
In addition to creating financial plans and managing portfolios for clients that are nearing or in retirement, Alex specializes in creating financial plans for the younger demographic who want to maximize the efficiency of their income and resources.
Alex is a member of the Financial Planning Association of Northeast Ohio where he leads the technology committee and develops website strategies. Alex participates in virtual financial planning through Nerdwallet’s Ask an Advisor. Alex also participates in the Steering Committee of the Muldoon Partners at the Muldoon Center for Entrepreneurship where he helps with the strategy and direction of the group. Alex is also a member of the Estate Planning Council of Cleveland.
Alex is enthusiastic and creative, with an interest in health and fitness as well as developing relationships and becoming part of the Cleveland community.
Assets Under Management:
Answers given on Advisor Network do not include all of the information required to create a financial plan or take an official tax position. Advisor Network questions and answers will probably not apply directly to each situation. Before implementing any advice on Advisor Network, you should seek the advice of a professional expert.
One might get the impression that dividends are passive income because owning a stock and receiving dividends is passive in nature. Often times, portfolio income, interest, and even lottery winnings will be confused as being passive income by investors. There are only two sources of passive activity: rental activity income or business income in which the taxpayer does not materially participate.
Dividends can be classified as either ordinary or qualified. Ordinary dividends are taxable as ordinary income, qualified dividends that meet certain requirements are taxed at lower capital gain rates. Ordinary dividends are the most common type of distribution you would receive from a corporation or a mutual fund. You can assume that any dividend you receive is an ordinary dividend unless the delivering firm tells you otherwise.
For a dividend to be considered qualified; the dividend must be paid by a US corporation or a qualified foreign corporation and you must meet a specific holding period. For the holding period to qualify you must hold the stock that is paying the dividend for 60 days during the 121-day period that begins 60 days before the ex-dividend date. There is also a list of distinct types of dividends that are automatically considered non-qualified. Some popular examples on this list are dividends paid by:
- Real estate investments trusts (REITs)
- Master limited partnerships (MLPs)
- Employee stock options
- Tax-exempt companies
I hope you found this helpful.
Under SIMPLE IRAs, employers have the option to either contribute 2% of an employee's compensation, up to an annual limit of $265,000 (for 2016), or match employee's contributions on a dollar-for-dollar basis up to 3% of the employee’s compensation. If your employer is providing the match, they will be required to match your contributions dollar-for-dollar up to 3% of compensation, no matter the timeframe of your contributions. This gives employees the flexibility to contribute more freely throughout the year as opposed to making a consistent contribution month-to-month to get the most out of the employer's match.
Let's assume you are earning $60,000 and your employer has chosen the 3% match option for the SIMPLE IRA retirement plan provided. The employer is required to contribute $1,800 ($60,000 x 3%), but only if you contribute at least that much. This doesn't require that you contribute $150 a month ($1,800 / 12) to take full advantage of the match. As long as you contribute 3% of salary for the calendar year, the employer will be required to match your contribution, even if you made these contributions in a few months out of the year.
To make sure everything is in order, I suggest you consult with your plan administrator because not all retirement plans operate the same. I hope you find this helpful.
Early distributions of Roth IRA contributions can be tricky and require a little bit of financial prowess. If done right, you can withdrawal the amount you contributed to a Roth IRA without that amount being taxed or penalized. The reason for this is because you have already been taxed on that amount of money. When you make an early distribution from a Roth IRA, your custodian (the company at which the Roth IRA is held) will send a 1099-R to the IRS. The IRS will receive the 1099-R and assume the distribution is taxable. Generally, you will have to fill out form 8606 to prove that you are withdrawing less than, or equal to, the amount you have contributed to you Roth IRA. "Part III" of this form deals with distributions from Roth IRAs.
To ensure that you handle this matter properly, I would advise that you seek help from a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) or a tax-experience Certified Financial Planner (CFP). I hope you found this helpful and best of luck to you!
A 5% owner of a corporation would be considered a Highly Compensated Employee (HCE) and that fact may be applicable if the retirement plan was a 401(k). If the plan was a 401(k), it would be subject to Average Deferral Percentage (ADP) and Average Contribution Percentage (ACP) which measures the degree in which Highly Compensated Employees are engaged with the plan. Since this plan is a SIMPLE IRA and not a 401(k), the fact that the employee owns over 5% of the corporation doesn't apply.
The employee must also receive at least $5,000 during any two years prior to the current year and is reasonably expected to receive at least $5,000 in the current year for the employee to be considered an eligible employee. If this is true, and as long as the employee is still working, they may continue to contribute to the SIMPLE IRA, even if they are 70 1/2 or older. A Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) will be necessary to withdrawal from the account if the employee is 70 1/2 or older - even if they are still working.
I hope you found this helpful.
Your question depends on where it was that you claimed your primary residence in the past five years. A primary residence is where you spend the majority of your time living throughout the year. If you are questioning what your primary residence was at that time, it would be the address listed on your: US Postal Service address, Voter Registration card, federal and state tax returns, driver's license or registration. Often this residence is near your work, your bank, or the residence of one or more family members.
You will need to have claimed this home as your primary residence for two out of the last five years from the date of sale. Look back five years and that is the time frame you will be primarily concerned with. The years before this time frame will most likely not be applicable in determining if your home will qualify for the exclusion. The two-year period does not need to be a single block of time. You will need a total of 24 months (730 days) during the five-year period.
After your research, and if you determine you are eligible for an exclusion, the amount excludible may be dependent on the logistics of your divorce. I suggest meeting with a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) to make sure all the details are in order.
I hope I got you started on the right path and good luck!