“How to Financially Prepare for Maternity Leave” Quote by Intermountain Financial Group Professional

Intermountain Financial Group professional, Dennis Walker, quoted in article about, “How to Financially Prepare for Maternity Leave.”

by Stephanie Christensen on October 26, 2012

Most expectant parents soon realize that their financial plans will shift significantly with the news that a little one is on the way, but there are financial steps you need to take beyond your budget to ensure a financially stress-free maternity leave.

Clarify your maternity policy

According to the the 1993 Family and Medical Leave Act, new moms who have worked at their current employer for at least one year, and at a company with at least 50 employees, are legally entitled to 12 weeks of time off after having a baby. However, your employer isn’t required to pay you a dime for that time. Check with your human resources department to understand if you’ll receive any payments over maternity leave, and to determine how short-term disability, family leave, and vacation days can supplement your income while you’re out.

Clarify the policy around time out of the office for medical appointments, or medically mandated bed rest or work limitations early in the game, too. When you near your due date, you’ll see the doctor at least once a week. If you’re employer requires you to take a half day for that time, for example, you’ll quickly whittle into the paid time off you’ve planned to apply to your leave.

Save six months’ worth of expenses

It’s far more exciting to focus on funding new baby gear and nursery décor, but stick to budget basics: Save! Financial advisor John J. Fiorito of RMR Wealth Management, LLC says expectant moms should have a minimum of six months (ideally, 12 months), worth of their salary in a savings account (not investments), before baby arrives.

Not only will this “float you” through unpaid bouts of maternity leave, it ultimately means you’ll have a cushion for unforeseen medical emergencies, childcare–and, even, job loss. Determine the exact figure that you’ll need to cover at least six months worth of your paycheck, and establish an interest bearing savings account that you can’t dip into easily.

Online savings provider Smarty Pig pays 1% APY on deposits, requires no minimum balance fees, and allows you to name your savings goal and target goal amount, so you can monitor your progress. It also allows others to contribute to your savings in the form of gift cards—which are ultimately far more valuable than receiving everything off of that baby registry!

Know your medical coverage

Understanding where your medical insurance is accepted, what is covered and what it limits, and whether you must satisfy a deductible before coverage begins is a top priority the moment you hear you’re expecting. Dennis Walker of Intermountain Financial Group says that a basic, healthy birth usually costs about $10,000 in medical expenses, without insurance coverage.

Aim to save at least $250 a month to cover medical bills for your prenatal treatment leading up to the birth, as well as for delivery and your hospital stay. Understand exactly how long your insurance provider will allow you to stay in the hospital (some limit it to less than 48 hours), and clarify whether the “clock” starts ticking at the time you’re admitted (the labor process can span an entire day or more), or when baby is actually born. Additionally, the services of a lactation consultant and/or medical supplies used to support baby’s feeding (such as breast shields and breast pumps), may not be covered by your insurance at all. Before you accept any such device from the nurse, ask!

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Intermountain Financial Group Has Hired Two Additional Financial Services Professionals for Salt Lake City Office

Nick Morrell

Nick Morrell and Dennis Walker to Work with Individuals, Families, and Business Owners to Assist with Financial Strategies

Intermountain Financial Group, the Utah Agency of Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual), has hired Nick Morrell and Dennis Walker as financial services professionals. Morrell and Walker will work with individuals and business owners to assist with strategies for life insurance, disability income insurance, long term care insurance, and business goals.

Nick Morrell is a graduate of the University of Utah with a Bachelor’s Degree in Finance and, while in attendance, he was part of the Athletics Honor Roll. He has strong financial experience in accounting and sales. Morrell’s goal is to identify each client’s needs and provide them with strategies that will aid in retirement planning and financial confidence.

Dennis Walker is a graduate of LDS Business College and has a background in both educational and business consulting. His primary focus is assisting his clients with their retirement and life insurance needs. “Whether it’s a business or a family, being prepared for any situation is a necessity,” states Walker. “Intermountain Financial Group is giving me an opportunity to create targeted strategies for those who understand this.”

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For more than 157 years, local residents and businesses rely on Intermountain Financial Group (http://www.intermountainfinancialgroup.com) to help them secure their financial futures. The company significantly impacts Utah’s economy as seen in the numbers below (as of December, 2011):

  • More than 13,800 policyholders and clients1
  • Servicing over $740 million in assets2
  • Over $3.9 billion in life insurance coverage in      force3
  • Over $21 million of life insurance benefits      (claims) paid4
  • More than $8 million in dividends to whole life      policyholders5

 

The company has been in awarded the national Sloan When Work Works award in 2011, 2010, 2009 and 2008, as well as the Work/Life Award by the Utah Department of Workforce Services in 2011, 2010, 2008 and 2007 naming them one of Utah’s best places to work. The company currently has offices in Salt Lake City, Utah and St. George, Utah.

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*Securities and investment advisory services offered through qualified registered representatives of MML Investors Services, LLC. member SIPC.  (Salt Lake City Agency – 6340 S. 3000 E., Suite 500, SLC, UT  84121 – (801) 943-6277)

MassMutual Financial Group is a marketing name for Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual) and its affiliated companies and sales representatives.

Insurance offered through MassMutual and other fine companies.

  1. 1.         An insured, owner, or payer of a MassMutual policy or contract.
  2. 2.         Includes values of MassMutual and subsidiary insurance companies’ insurance and retirement products and investment products offered through MML Investors Services, LLC, a MassMutual subsidiary.
  3. 3.         Amount of individual life insurance in force as of 12/31/11 related to products issued by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company and its subsidiaries, C.M. Life Insurance Company and MML Bay State Life Insurance Company.
  4. 4.         Amount of individual life insurance claims paid from 1/1/11 to 12/31/11 related to products issued by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company and its subsidiaries, C.M. Life Insurance Company and MML Bay State Life Insurance Company.
  5. 5.         The amount of dividends to whole life policyholders in 2011.