Special Training Course for Advisers Serving Gov, Military Clients

Mike Harris, chair of retirement studies at the College for Financial Planning and a 1982 graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy, will lead the program.

The College for Financial Planning, part of Kaplan, has launched a specialized course developed to support financial advisers who work with government workers and military personnel.

As the leaders at the College for Financial Planning point out, more than 25 million current government and military personnel face many complex issues related to their retirement. They face many of the same challenges as private sector workers, such as increasing longevity and higher health care costs, but they also face unique challenges related to their public-sector employment. For example, many military “retirees” may actually be transitioning to a second career at a life stage when they are not financially secure enough to stop working.

“Among the major issues today is advising people on how to live on their retirement account and how to manage their money in retirement,” says Mike Harris, a professor and chair of retirement studies at the College and a 1982 graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy. “The huge wave of Baby Boomers retiring means there is a lot of money coming out of 401(k) accounts, defined benefit plans and individual retirement accounts. Retirees and those about to retire have a lot of issues to understand, such as income taxes, estate planning issues, knowledge of the market and how to build a basket strategy.”

Harris will lead the specialized training program. He says military—as well as federal, state and local government employees—face a unique range of retirement-related factors. They may be transitioning to a new job at a time that they can make enhanced contributions to a defined contribution type retirement plan, and they may be able to leverage benefits coming from the Veterans Affairs Department, including privileged healthcare options.