Spring 2018


O'Neill Today

Spring 2018




https://mlsvc01-prod.s3.amazonaws.com/aa0741ea201/cf58fc15-2c21-4723-b6b8-48d056da3f73.pngDear Friends,

Spring is finally in the air after a rather lengthy Winter that just didn't seem to want to let go. And it seems to be on full throttle with temperatures soaring into the mid to high 20's already. Let's hope it lasts. 

Its been a busy time at our office too as our Team, and luckily our business, continues to grow. Barb Hodges has rejoined our Team and is working with Jennifer Harris in our Employee Benefits Division. Barb, you may recall, worked with me from 1996 to 2006, and after the birth of her 3rd child in 1996 (in a space of 5 years I might add) she decided being a full time Mom was in order. Jennifer originally joined me when Barb was on her first maternity leave and has somehow put up with me now for 16+ years. That's a long mat. leave! We are delighted to have Barb back with us full time and reacquainted with Jennifer. Here is a picture of us along with Kathryn Libbiter at our booth in Toronto as we attended the Prospectors and Developers Association Conference in early March.

Some interesting reading in this edition of our newsletter. I hope you enjoy. Wishing you and your Family all the best for a long and warm Spring and Summer.


Thomas O'Neill







Featured Articles:


Seven ways to help minimize taxes on your estate. Here are a few tax-saving strategies to consider.

Learn More.


What do you need to file your taxes? Use this checklist to help make sure that you're providing your accountant or tax specialist with everything he or she needs.

Learn More.





Role reversal - How to manage costs when caring for aging parents.


Canada's seniors outnumber the country's children. The 2016 Census, which counted 5.9 million people aged 65 and over and 5.8 million people aged 14 and under,1 was the first to reveal this shift. That's in part because people are living longer. The fastest-growing age group in the 2016 Census was centenarians - people over age 100.2 And a growing aging population brings health care challenges. It's falling to adult children to handle the realities of their parents' declining health, and in many cases the associated costs as well. 

Learn More.



Price Relief for Generic Drugs  Enhance



While the cost of health care continues to climb, there is finally some significant savings on the horizon.  A new 5-year initiative has been launched to reduce the cost of generic drugs. As of April 1, 2018, the prices of nearly 70 of the most commonly prescribed drugs in Canada will be reduced by 25% - 40%, resulting in overall discounts of up to 90% off the price of their brand-name equivalents. These drugs include those used to treat high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and depression, and are collectively used by millions of Canadians. This is good news for both plan members and plan sponsors! 


Read more here...



Things to Consider When Choosing an Executor Plan



Choosing an executor is an important part of drafting your will. Your executor will have significant responsibilities; an executor is legally and financially responsible for the settling of your estate, including any errors.  Responsibilities include managing the disbursement of estate assets, filing final tax returns and other important paperwork.


Below are a few factors to consider when selecting your executor:


Age and health of individual.  Selecting someone who is older has pitfalls. Your executor may predecease you or be infirm and therefore be unable to act for your estate when the time comes.


Complexity of your estate.  If your estate is more complex, it is important to select someone who has the knowledge and expertise to manage the affairs.  This may mean selecting a professional executor or co-executor for your estate. A complex estate would include assets which require complex valuation, such as a private corporation, shares in a business, or cross-border assets.


Complex family relationships.  A family member may seem like a logical choice, but this may not be suitable if there are complex family relationships. Conflict between an executor and other family members could prevent your wishes from being carried out as intended.  Dealing with challenging family dynamics during the unwinding of an estate may also lead to conflict and long-term family rifts. 


How close are you to the individual.  It is also important to keep in mind how close you are to the executor. If you select your closest friend, this may not be suitable as this individual may be grieving. Handling your estate may be too difficult and the process may be delayed. 


The time commitment required.  Depending on the complexity of your estate, the time commitment may be considerable.  You want to ensure that your executor is able to commit the time required to complete the process.


Depending on these factors, it may be desirable to appoint a professional co-executor such as a lawyer, accountant, banker or financial advisor who can offer an unbiased, objective opinion if conflict arises.  A professional co-executor will also provide expertise that will be useful when handling more complex issues.  



TFSA vs. RRSP  Success



Introduced in 2009, the Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA) has been widely touted as an alternative to RRSP's. While we advocate that TFSA's make up an important part of your overall financial plan, we see them as a complement to your RRSP's and other investment vehicles.


The attached article goes through some key differences between TFSA's and RRSP's, highlighting the benefits of both.


Please take a moment to review this information and please do not hesitate to get in touch to discuss how a TFSA can fit into your investment strategy.


Click here for more information.




Thomas O'Neill & Associates Inc. | www.oneill-inc.com
Toll Free: 800.757.2799