Chiropractor Trying to Get Business the Wrong Way – Illegally

Chiropractor Trying to Get Business the Wrong Way – Illegally

“Nick” is a recent graduate Palmer College of Chiropractic in Davenport, Iowa, who returned to his hometown in Southern California, opening an office.

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“After I hung out my shingle, it was clear that I needed to attract a patient base — preferably personal injury, auto accident victims as that’s where the money is and why I am calling you. Can we discuss my how-to-get-business plan?”

I have always had a great relationship with chiropractors and was happy to help, as Nick needed my advice more than he could ever realize.

The Pay-to-Play Business Plan

“I have friends — such as ambulance drivers, EMTs, E.R. nurses, police officers and lawyers  — who come in contact with auto accident victims. My idea is to give them my business cards and encourage handing them out to these people, telling them that I will help them get better, and a nice insurance settlement.

“Naturally, I will pay very well for these referrals, either per referral or a commission —  a percentage of fees I earn on the case. Or, if they did not want to be paid, I could arrange for a great weekend in Las Vegas, a dinner at a nice restaurant, just ways of showing my appreciation for their help.

“Does this make sense?” he asked.

­On the Surface it Makes Sense, But ...

“Most people, looking at Nick’s business plan would say, ‘Yeah, that seems reasonable. People refer cases to him, and he gives them a little something by way of showing appreciation,” Southern California-based attorney Shawn Steel told me.

“However, what Nick wants to do is clearly illegal,” Steel points out, and he knows, for in addition to practicing law, he has developed a niche specialty, educating chiropractors in laws that apply to them. He is on the faculty of Palmer West Chiropractic College in San Jose, Calif., Life-West Chiropractic College West and Southern California University of Heath Sciences.

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How to Save on a Used Car

How to Save on a Used Car

Saving money on a used car is about more than spending as little as possible on the car itself. You want to get a good deal, and that means getting the right car that meets (and will continue to meet) your needs.

Those needs vary as much as individuals (and cars!), so we're not wading into which used car to buy, but, rather, tips and techniques that can help you save money when shopping for a used car.

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The Best Bank Accounts for You

The Best Bank Accounts for You

Ryan Ermey: Whether you're looking for higher interest rates, lower fees or just don't feel like going into a branch these days, don't even consider shopping for a new bank account before listening to this show. Kiplinger's contributing editor Lisa Gerstner rejoins the podcast to break down the best of big banks, online banks, credit unions and more in our main segment. On today's show, Sandy and I chat about news surrounding RMDs and answer a question about 403(b) plans from our listener mailbag. That's all ahead on this episode of Your Money's Worth. Stick around.

Episode Length: 00:27:03Listen to previous Your Money's Worth episodes SUBSCRIBE: Apple Google Play Spotify Overcast RSS

Ryan Ermey: Welcome to Your Money's Worth. I'm Kiplinger's associate editor Ryan Ermey and joined -- from on the road -- by senior editor Sandy Block. Sandy, how are you?

Sandy Block: That's right. I'm in West Virginia. And if you hear dogs barking, I apologize in advance.

Ryan Ermey: Well, we're on the road. We're doing this by our bootstraps.

Sandy Block: That's right.

Ryan Ermey: So people can deal with the golden retrievers barking at the mailman or what have you.

Sandy Block: Whatever, yeah.

Ryan Ermey: A couple of pieces of news to kick off the show here. And one is a piece of Kiplinger news, which I know all of our readers are excited about. And that is that we have a shiny new website.

Sandy Block: Yes, we do.

Ryan Ermey: If you've been visiting the website, either to read all of our wonderful content or to check out our podcast, you may have noticed that, the website has been replaced by an all new enhanced mobile-first design. The whole idea behind the redesigned and responsive website is that it automatically adapts to any device. It's the perfect platform to bring you even more of our award-winning content. So, yeah, go and check it out. Clean light pages should mean that the site loads more quickly, it should be faster to navigate and we should be rolling out more updates in the months ahead.

Ryan Ermey: I don't know about you San

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Stock Market Today: Home-Run Home-Sales Data Delights Wall Street

Stock Market Today: Home-Run Home-Sales Data Delights Wall Street

The market made a clean shot higher on Monday as investors' eyes yet again were diverted from COVID-19 data and toward encouraging economic figures.

The weekend saw continued growth in coronavirus cases across more than a dozen "hot spot" states, prompting governors to consider further actions to slow the spread. New Jersey announced it would not reopen indoor dining this week; New York appears to be considering following suit.

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Investors, however, appeared to focus on the real estate market. The National Association of Realtors said May's pending home sales, while off 5.1% year-over-year, surged 44.3% from April's figures – almost triple the improvement economists expected.

The Dow climbed 2.3% to 25,595, led by a massive 14.3% surge in Boeing (BA), which received a Federal Aviation Administration green light to begin test flights on its troubled 737 Max aircraft. The Nasdaq improved 1.2% to 9,874.15, the S&P 500 climbed 1.5% to 3,053, and the small-cap Russell 2000 stole the show with a 3.1% jump to 1,421.

Yet again, investors have plenty to chew on.

"The market is likely to remain in a period of consolidation marked by increased volatility as it digests the historic gains off the COVID-19 low, grapples with the impact of a re-acceleration in cases of coronavirus, anticipates the impact of the coming election, and works through a historic shutdown and reopening of economic activity," writes Canaccord Genuity equity strategist Tony Dwyer, who raised his S&P 500 target to above 3,300 over the next 12 to 18 months. "We have never had the combination of such low core inflation coupled with an unlimited support from the Fed, which is why we use a target of 3300+."

Shows of Strength Stand Out

No one should be surprised at Wall Street's response to economic data such as Monday's pending-home sales report. In the midst of extreme weakness, any displays of outsized strength are going to carry far more weight than under normal circumstances.

Income investors should take a cue here.

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21 Dividend Increases Announced During the COVID Crisis

21 Dividend Increases Announced During the COVID Crisis

Dividend increases, in normal times, are a commonplace occurrence that you can read about by the dozens every week.

But these aren’t normal times.

The COVID-19 pandemic and related shutdowns have forced many businesses into survival mode, looking for ways for to preserve cash and ride out the economic storm. In fact, during the month of April, S&P 500 components announced more dividend cuts and suspensions than they did dividend increases. Smaller companies outside the blue-chip index suffered the same fate, with dozens reducing or eliminating their payout programs altogether.

But if dividend hikes are a sign of fiscal strength during normal times, they’re a downright bold statement when they’re made in the middle of a recession. And some companies have indeed provided payout growth throughout the past couple of months – many of them with longstanding streaks, including several members of the S&P Dividend Aristocrats that have improved their dividends for at least 25 consecutive years.

Here are 21 stocks that have announced dividend increases during the COVID-19 crisis so far. This list can serve as a starting point for income investors looking for secure payouts with the potential for dividend growth over time.

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Did You Know You Can Start, Stop and Then Restart Social Security?

Did You Know You Can Start, Stop and Then Restart Social Security?

As the U.S. entered this recession, the unemployment rate hit a record high. Workers have been laid off or furloughed as businesses closed due to the coronavirus. With payrolls down, the benefits that Social Security offers could be more important than ever to a growing number of people near retirement whose incomes are being impacted.

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It’s impossible to know exactly how this recession will impact our economy long term, but we do know it might be impacting how retirees strategize their benefits. Depending on your unique situation, you might find yourself turning to one of these claiming strategies:

Enrolling in Benefits Early

If you’re 62 or older and faced with an unexpected job loss, you need to figure out if you will retire early or look for another job. Will you start taking Social Security, or will you tap into your retirement savings for income?

If you do decide to start taking Social Security early, you need to understand that your benefit will be permanently reduced if you claim before your full retirement age, which is somewhere between 66 and 67. For those who turn 62 in 2020, full retirement age is 66 and 8 months.

Because of the permanent reduction in benefits, we usually recommend waiting to claim Social Security until full retirement age or later … but if you need the income, taking Social Security early might be a good option.

Take Your Social Security Benefits, but Reserve the Right to Change Your Mind Within 1 Year

You are allowed to withdraw your Social Security benefits after enrolling. If you start taking Social Security before full retirement age and then find another job, you might decide to withdraw your benefits, or else you’ll face a reduced monthly check if you earn too much. You can withdraw your benefits within the first year of claiming Social Security, no matter what your age. You must pay back any money you received; the Social Security Administration then treats it like you never enrolled, and your monthly check can continue to grow until you start taking benefits again.

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Here’s an example of when this might make sense: Let’s say you're suddenly laid off at age 62 and decid

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Going Places Without a Car in Retirement

Going Places Without a Car in Retirement

Maria Seltzer used to drive downtown from the eastern part of San Diego County to the theater. Then she began driving instead to a nearby Metropolitan Transit System trolley stop, where she could park her car for free and ride about an hour into the city. “I like musicals,” Seltzer says. “If it’s a musical, I’m in.”

50 Best Places to Retire in the U.S.

Though Seltzer, 79, still drives, getting to the theater and ballet was becoming more difficult, especially competing for a parking spot downtown. “I was glad I could find a different way to get there,” she says.

In the midst of a deadly pandemic, it may be hard to imagine a time when riding mass transit or getting into a city cab will be perfectly normal things to do for anyone, let alone senior citizens. But eventually, when it becomes safe to do so, life will resume, and for many older adults, who no longer feel comfortable driving, having an alternative mode of transportation may be the difference between independence and social isolation. 

According to the American Journal of Public Health, Americans on average outlive their ability to drive safely by 10 years for women and seven years for men. Like Seltzer, three-quarters of Americans age 65 and older live in suburban and rural areas where mass transit options can be minimal, if they exist at all. 

Even some cities fall short. San Diego isn’t like New York City where you just get on the subway, says Seltzer, a former dancer who lived in New York before she and her late husband moved to California. “We don’t have that here.” 

Becoming a Passenger

Most Americans equate driving with autonomy and prefer not to think about a time when they can no longer drive, leaving them unprepared once that day finally arrives.

“They think they’re going to drive forever,” says Katherine Freund, founder of the Independent Transportation Network of America, a nonprofit transportation network for seniors and the visually impaired. Through affiliates or partnerships, ITN provides transportation for seniors in communities in 47 states. 

Eventually, though, something happens that prevents you from getting behind the wheel. Your vision deteriorates, for example, or you have a knee or hip replacement. Typically, “it’s not an all-or-nothing situa

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