A Preview of Ed Slott’s New Book: The New Retirement Savings Time Bomb

By Ed Slott, CPA

If you’re a dedicated Ed Slott and Company fan, at this point, you’ve likely heard about my upcoming new book, The New Retirement Savings Time Bomb (Penguin Random House, 2021). If you haven’t, then you’ve come to the right place to get a sneak peek of the timely, all-encompassing content it contains to navigate the retirement planning landscape in 2021 and beyond. It’s already a #1 new release in the retirement planning category on Amazon, and it’s still only available for presale !

In this special edition of the Slott Blog Report, I’m giving you an exclusive preview of my book by providing a few excerpts pulled directly from the book’s pages. I encourage you to also check out the video below to hear more about why I wrote the book and how it can help you keep more of your hard-earned money.

So, what exactly is this book about?

This book addresses the critical issue that every other retirement-related and tax-related book on the market ignores: protecting from excessive taxation the assets you’ve spent a lifetime building. No single factor is more significant to your ability to live the lifestyle you’ve been saving for all of your life, or to pass on your hard-earned savings to those you love.

Why is this component so crucial?

Due to a complex combination of distribution and estate taxes that kick in at retirement or death, millions of you are at risk of losing much—perhaps even most—of your retirement savings.

This dire turn of events, already happening now, will put a huge financial burden on you, your children, and society as the ranks of the retiring and already retired swell to historic proportions in the coming years when the retirement savings time bomb explodes (see Chapter 1).

And so, the overriding purpose of this book is to give savers like you the knowledge and the tools to defuse that bomb on your own—or with the help of your professional financial advisor— before detonation occurs.

How is this book different from the one I released back in 2003?

Saving and investing for retirement is tough enough, but it’s only one part of the retirement game. Since you can spend only what you keep, after taxes, you’ll have to take steps now to protect your savings. I want you to have more, keep more, and make it last. That is my focus in this newly revised edition.

Our tax laws are constantly changing, and you need to know how the most current rules can affect your planning. This special 2021 edition has been completely revised to include the most up-to-date information on all retirement, income tax, and estate law changes and provisions enacted and now in effect since we last went to press. It includes the latest changes made in the SECURE Act and the CARES Act—including the elimination of the stretch IRA, which will likely upend many of your existing retirement strategies. This devious provision inserted into the SECURE Act will be a big blow to even the best-laid plans.

The major overhaul of our tax system affects virtually everyone in some way, and many of the provisions have time limits. I will guide you through all of this, so you’ll know how to best take advantage of the changes and avoid some of the traps.

What exactly is the retirement savings time bomb?

It’s crucial to keep our eyes on the long- term big picture. The problem is most people don’t—or, worse, won’t—see the forest for the trees when it comes to things financial. Far too many people devote more time going over their super- market receipts to make sure they haven’t been overcharged than they’ll spend keeping their life savings from becoming a windfall for Uncle Sam. As a matter of fact, I’ve actually had clients cancel their estate-planning appointments with me to hit a sale at their local Costco. Believe me, they’ll have to score some mighty big bargains there, plus rob several banks, to make up the percentage of their life savings they’ll lose to taxes if they don’t get smart.

That’s what seeing the big picture is all about, and I’ve spent the better part of the past 30 years pointing this out. In all that time, I’ve seen as many horror stories as there are run-on sentences in the tax code. Now retiring in record numbers, the baby boomers (including me—except that I’m not retiring, especially when so many people need all this tax stuff explained!) are starting to take distributions from their retirement accounts. That means more and more costly and avoidable mistakes are being made.

Many new retirees are running up against some hard economic times, even more so in the wake of COVID-19, and need to protect their funds from future taxes. Some are leaving their jobs with the biggest check they’ve ever had (and biggest asset they own)—their retirement savings—and thus potentially opening themselves up to big financial problems. Having been so busy chasing investment returns all their working lives, they’ve often neglected the distribution part of the equation, and thus risk losing to the taxman a whopping amount of what they’ve saved.

In the coming years, I have no doubt that there will be an explosion of excessive taxation reaching epic proportions—an explosion that will give millions of ill-prepared and underprotected American savers like yourself the financial shock of their lives. The fallout from this “new retirement savings time bomb” will continue to affect you, your children, the economy, and society for years and years to come. Now is the time to step up and follow my 5-Step Action Plan, which will save big money for you and your family.

To get the full details of my 5-Step Action Plan to disarm the retirement savings time bomb, preorder your copy of my book here . If you order before March 7, you’ll also receive my bonus 20-minute mini course with valuable insights surrounding critical rollover decisions!

I’d also like to invite you to attend my virtual book launch party on March 2. Tune in live 6:00 – 6:30 p.m. ET for a live Q&A with Emmy-nominated CBS News Business Analyst and Host of “ Jill On Money ,” Jill Schlesinger, CFP®. There will also be trivia, giveaways and more. Mark your calendar and visit  irahelp.com/launchparty  at 6:00 p.m. ET on March 2 as we stream on YouTube Live!

From THE NEW RETIREMENT SAVINGS TIME BOMB by Ed Slott, published by Penguin Books, an imprint of Penguin Publishing Group, a division of Penguin Random House, LLC. Copyright © 2021 by Ed Slott.