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Finance6 key financial steps to take after a layoff

6 key financial steps to take after a layoff

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1. Take a financial stock

Among the primary issues to do in the event you lose your job is take inventory of financial sources at your disposal, in accordance to financial advisors.

Those could embody different streams of earnings equivalent to a associate’s wage, in addition to emergency savings, company stock and financial accounts including a 401(k) or individual retirement account (more on this in a bit).

Your resources may also include company benefits like severance pay or cashing out unused leave like vacation and sick days. Workers should also check to see if they can continue receiving benefits like company-sponsored health and life insurance.

Households should also update their budgets to get a sense of current spending and how that could be adjusted without your paycheck.

“You want to get clarity,” said financial advisor Winnie Sun, co-founder of Sun Group Wealth Partners in Irvine, California, and a member of CNBC’s Advisor Council. “We all think we don’t spend that much.

“But most of us probably do.”

These factors — your budget and money stash — will help dictate your timeline for finding a new job.

2. Apply for unemployment insurance

Further, be prepared with relevant information like employment records for about the past two years, Nightingale said.

“Don’t simply decide up the telephone and say, ‘I used to be working at XYZ Company,’ since you want greater than that to apply,” she said.

You may not be immediately eligible for unemployment insurance if you’re receiving severance pay. But you may be eligible for full or partial benefits depending on your individual circumstance and state rules. If you’re deemed ineligible, file a new claim once severance pay stops.

3. Negotiate your exit

Typically, those who try get something.

Winnie Sun

co-founder of Sun Group Wealth Partners

There may also be room to negotiate staying on part-time or as a freelancer — which may be particularly important for workers closer to retirement age who aren’t confident they’ll be able to find another job quickly, Sun said.

“At this point, what’s the worst thing that’ll happen to you?” Sun said. “Typically, those who try get something.”

4. Figure out which assets to tap, in what order

Knowing where to draw money from can be a delicate balancing act, due to potential tax consequences.

If you need to pull from financial accounts, cash from an emergency fund — if you have one — will generally be your first choice, according to financial advisors.

Savers with Roth IRAs can typically withdraw their account contributions tax- and penalty-free. (That’s not true of investment earnings, though. Some limitations might also apply to pre-tax IRA contributions that had been subsequently transformed to Roth IRA funds.)

Roth 401(ok) accountholders also can pull out cash tax- and penalty-free, below two situations: The proprietor should be over 59½ years previous and made a contribution not less than 5 tax years in the past.

Those with long-term investments (held for more than a year) in taxable brokerage accounts can sell them for income at a preferential tax rate.

Tax-deferred accounts like a pre-tax 401(k) or IRA should generally be a last resort, according to Ivory Johnson, a certified financial planner and founder of Delancey Wealth Management, based in Washington.

Workers would owe income tax on that distribution, and those under age 59½ would pay an additional penalty. One exception: The “Rule of 55” allows a laid-off worker who’s at least 55 years old to withdraw 401(k) funds without that 10% early-withdrawal penalty.

“You could also be somebody who all the time mentioned, ‘I’ll by no means withdraw these retirement contributions,'” said Kevin Mahoney, CFP, founder and CEO of Illumint, based in Washington. “But below sure circumstances, that is essentially the most prudent transfer to make.”

5. Network and construct job expertise

10’000 Hours | Digitalvision | Getty Images

6. Take a deep breath

Lastly, don’t be too hard on yourself. Recognize that layoffs are often due to factors beyond an individual’s control instead of a personal failure.

Take a deep breath. Use your available time to step back and reflect on your career — what’s important to you? Would you like to try something new?

“Life is a long-term race, not a dash,” Johnson said. “Sometimes it is actually a blessing to get laid off” though it could not appear that method proper now, he added.


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