Solving The Retirement Puzzle

Solving the retirement puzzle requires a sound financial plan. In addition to helping you create a reliable source of income, we offer investment and advanced planning strategies to help meet your needs. Let us help you navigate the complex financial world with clear and easy-to-understand options.

Retirement Planning For State & County Employees

C10 Financial has specific focus within Florida’s state and county retirement systems. A good majority of the planning we do is with employees close to retiring and separating from their employment from a state or local entity. We have many years of planning experience working with the government, county and agency employees of our state.

We focus on providing you with clear and easy-to-understand options if you are transitioning to retirement or already retired. Our experience includes working with members of the Florida Retirement System with strategies for their pension and Deferred Retirement Option Plan (DROP) accounts, and extends to local and county employees looking for options for their Tax Sheltered Annuity / 403(b) and 457 plans.

DROP Options

Is your participation in the Florida Retirement System’s Deferred Retirement Option Plan nearing its end? Are you close to retiring? If so, you will have to decide how to take your DROP payment. This is an important financial decision, depending on what you would like to accomplish in retirement, your goals, expenses and plans.

As you may or may not know, when your DROP participation ends you have three choices for your DROP assets. The first is in the form of a lump-sum payment (with 20% withheld for federal income taxes). If you haven’t yet reached age 59½ (or younger, depending on your service class) your payment may likely be considered an early distribution and subject to an additional 10% early withdrawal tax.

The second choice is as a direct rollover to an eligible retirement plan. These include the Florida Retirement System pension plan, a 403(b) or 457 plan (generally, a plan in which you already participate, as well as other tax-qualified plans that accept rollovers), an individual retirement account (IRA), or an annuity provided by private insurers.

Thirdly, you have the option of a combination of a partial lump-sum payment and a rollover. A rollover into a Roth IRA is not an option.

Whatever you choose, it’s important to think about whether you will continue to work after DROP, how much money you believe you will need in retirement, and your other sources of retirement income, like a pension, Social Security or investments. Connect with us to let us know how we can help!

Retirement Planning For Federal Government Employees

The world of federal government employee benefits is a complex area. It requires specific knowledge and experience to help navigate the investment options and withdrawal rules within the different plans. Dan Ward, our founder, holds the Chartered Federal Employee Benefits Consultant (ChFEBCSM) designation. This establishes him as a financial services professional with a thorough understanding of the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS), Thrift Savings Plans (TSP), FEGLI – Federal Employees’ Group Life Insurance Program, and other benefits available only to federal employees.

As a federal employee, there are several choices to make when you retire, including the withdrawal rules and investment options for the Thrift Savings Plan. If you annuitize, our team can help assess the different payment options and how the income fits within your overall retirement plan. If you take regular payments, we can help you gain a better understanding of what the impact might be for your tax situation.

In addition, if you are part of FEGLI, you will likely need to decide if you want to reduce your life insurance coverage, or make a choice of no reduction. There are additional premiums, unless you choose the 75% coverage reduction option. Based on your needs, C10 Financial will help plan with you to find out what options make sense for you and your beneficiaries.

Comprehensive Financial & Retirement Planning

For the many facets of your retirement puzzle to fit together, a financial plan should include strategies for reliable income, when to claim Social Security, tax planning, and a smooth, tax-efficient plan to pass on your legacy to your loved ones.

Income Planning

When you get down to it, there isn’t a way to really enjoy retirement – or even retire in general – without income. This is among the most important pieces to any comprehensive plan. Going from a paycheck to paying yourself requires planning to balance all of your sources of income with careful consideration of your expenses, inflation, unexpected costs and emergencies.

With life expectancies rising and the need for a secure retirement income for, perhaps, 20 or more years, it’s important to have a source of income you can’t outlast. Whatever you think the numbers are that you will need in retirement, we can help provide options. The goal for a retirement plan is simple: Don’t run out of money.

Financial Planning

What is most important to you when it comes to your finances and creating wealth? What are some of your retirement goals? As we discover more about your values, beliefs, and the outcomes you want to achieve, we can develop strategies and recommendations to help you move forward on the path to financial independence.

C10 Financial’s advisors can map out a plan based on whether a financial goal is within a short-, intermediate-, or long-term timeframe. We can recommend ways to, for example, help fund children’s and grandchildren’s education, finance your travels plans, purchase an additional home, or just share and enjoy your wealth with family and friends.

Retirement Tax Strategies

Taxes are a part of all of our lives and don’t go away in retirement. Our taxes may even increase if we have accumulated a large amount of assets on a tax-deferred basis. The government requires us to take out Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) at age 70½ which are generally taxed as ordinary income. It makes sense to plan now before you have to take out your first RMD.

There are also several ways to use your RMDs as a way to cover expenses or for reinvestment. But, there are also ways to lower what you may be required to withdraw by converting a portion of your tax-qualified money prior to your first RMD. Depending on your financial situation, these strategies might include a Roth IRA, other retirement products, or through qualified charitable donations.

Wealth & Investment Management

Investing your money during retirement can include a blend of safe and dependable low-risk products, along with a small portion that is subject to market risk. Your risk tolerance is among the most important factors to consider and it’s generally wise to keep a greater proportion of your portfolio in guaranteed and safe insurance products and other vehicles as you age.

It’s also important to have an investment management plan that can weather the storm from significant losses. This is because it becomes difficult to make up lost ground once a portfolio has incurred a large loss. With retirement lasting longer for more Americans than it did in the past, removing your portfolio from market volatility can help improve your chances that your money is there for you when you need it the most.

Legacy Planning

Don’t wait to prepare to transition your wealth and establish the legacy you wish to leave for future generations. We can work with you and other professionals in your network on a roadmap to provide for your heirs and financially protect your family. If it is important to you, this planning can include making an impact through charitable giving. We can also help determine what assets can be used to provide any needed liquidity to offset estate taxes, while also minimizing the overall tax impact of the transition of your estate.


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Investment advisory services offered by duly registered individuals on behalf of ChangePath, LLC a Registered Investment Adviser. ChangePath, LLC and C-10 Financial are unaffiliated entities.