What To Do If You Get Laid Off

June 29, 2018

In 2017, a total of 418,770 people were laid off from their jobs. (1) While this is 20 percent below the previous year’s number, it’s still a significant amount of people who experienced an unexpected and stressful life change. Downsizing has become a way of life in today’s economy, as institutions and organizations desperately try to keep up with technological advances, changing markets, and financial woes. No matter how your employer seems to be doing, you should at least consider what a layoff would mean for you. How do you move forward if you get laid off?

 

1. Read The Fine Print

If you are laid off, the last thing you want to do is wade through piles of paperwork and make important decisions that will have future financial impact. Unfortunately, you will have to. Make sure you go through your HR paperwork with a fine tooth comb before signing anything and ask detailed questions about severance pay, remaining vacation and sick time, and unemployment insurance.

 

2. Strategize A Plan For Your Assets

You probably have a collection of assets from your years at your job, most likely in the form of retirement accounts. What are you going to do with them when you are no longer with your employer? Is there a way for you to get a paycheck from them? You need a plan, and a financial professional can help. Someone experienced with your field can help you decide if you should rollover your 401(k) or 403(b) and how to make pension elections.

 

3. Evaluate Your Healthcare Options

You may have several options available to you for health insurance, such as COBRA, private insurance, or Medicare. A knowledgeable financial professional can help you analyze your options to see what is best in your situation. They can also help you strategize the best way to pay the premiums, such as using IRA funds penalty-free in spite of your age.

 

4. Stay In The Game

Many people decide to retire when they are laid off. If that’s not your plan, you need to stay connected personally to those in your industry. It will be a lot easier to network and find your next job if you have current connections and active relationships to work off of.

 

Another way to improve your future job search is to use your extra time to hone your LinkedIn profile. According to a JobVite survey, 95% of recruiters use LinkedIn to search for candidates and 92% post jobs on LinkedIn. (2) If you are going to be looking for a job, LinkedIn is not optional. It’s mandatory. Just having an account with a one-line job description is not enough, though, if you want to be competitive. You need to update and expand your profile to stay relevant in your industry.

 

5. Be Conservative With Your Spending

When you don’t have money coming in, you want to limit the money going out as much as possible. Getting a handle on where you stand financially after a layoff is critical to keeping your stress and anxiety in check. Revisit your budget, factoring in severance or other unemployment benefits, and find ways to cut back on expenses so you have a financial cushion if the job hunt takes longer than you thought.

 

6. Reconsider Your Portfolio Risk

Review the risk level of your assets. If you are going to be spending some of your investments sooner than originally planned, you may need to get more conservative with your portfolio.

 

7. Determine When To Take Social Security

When you decide to claim your Social Security retirement benefits has a big impact on the amount of benefit you receive. The longer you wait, the greater your benefit will be. If you get laid off, you don’t want to rush to take Social Security if it’s not necessary.

 

8. Ask For Help

When you are let go from your job, you have a lot of financial decisions to make. Don’t try to make them all on your own. You will have a lot more confidence in your decisions if you make them with the counsel of an experienced financial professional. Whether you’re trying to sort through healthcare or figure out if you can afford to retire, the objective and experienced advice of Beacon Wealth Management will be invaluable. Call us today at (304) 626-3900 or email me at jhalterman@bwmwv.com so we can help you walk away from your current job with confidence and joyful anticipation of the future.

 

About John

John is the founder and owner of Beacon Wealth Management. He specializes in helping entrepreneurs, professional practitioners and retiree redzoners overcome the major financial challenges facing affluent families.  

 

As a trusted and friendly financial partner, John delivers a collaborative client experience that empowers and guides people to reach a greater purpose for their wealth and pursue their financial dreams. He understands the multifaceted set of financial worries people face as they become more successful and get within the retirement redzone.    

 

John is well-regarded throughout the business community for his expertise. He has appeared as an expert guest on the “Brian Tracy Show” and “Hollywood live with Jack Canfield”, is the co-author of the book, Masters of Success with Brian Tracy, is the host of the WDTV News 5 segment, “Solutions 4 Financial Independence,” and has conducted hundreds of educational events on Retirement and Investment Advisory, Tax Reduction and Wealth Transfer Planning.  These include many Universities, Federal Employee Organizations, Professional Associations and Large Energy Companies throughout the eastern United States.

 

With more than two decades of experience, John is credentialed as a Certified Wealth Strategist (CWS), Accredited Investment Fiduciary (AIF), Certified Estate Planner (CEP), Chartered Federal Employee Benefits Consultant (ChFEBC), Professional Plan Consultant (PPC) and Registered Financial Consultant (RFC). He is also a past multi-year member of Ed Slott’s Master Elite IRA Study Group.   

 

A native of Weston, West Virginia, John served in the United States Air Force prior to becoming a Wealth Advisor. Today, he resides with his family in Clarksburg, West Virginia. He and his wife, Lisa, have been married since 2005 and have three amazing children. A family-oriented man, he is passionate about giving back to his community, coaching youth sports, landscaping, architectural design and playing racquetball.

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(1) https://www.cnbc.com/2018/01/04/job-cut-announcements-in-2017-see-lowest-level-since-1990-challenger.html

(2) https://www.job-hunt.org/social-networking/LinkedIn-job-search/LinkedIn-job-search.shtml

 

 

 

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Securities offered through Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., a broker-dealer, member FINRA/SIPC. Advisory services offered through Cambridge Investment Research Advisors, Inc., a Registered Investment Adviser. Beacon Wealth Management operates independently of Cambridge. This communication is strictly intended for individuals residing in the states of DC, DE, FL, MD, NC, OH, PA, SC, TN, TX, VA, and WV. No offers may be made or accepted from any resident outside the specific state(s) referenced.

 

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