4 States

— Blog post courtesy of the Internal Revenue Service.  WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service today offered taxpayers still working on their 2017 taxes a number of tips. These basic tips are designed to help people avoid common errors that could delay refunds or cause future tax problems. As the April 17 deadline approaches, the IRS encourages taxpayers to file electronically. Doing so, whether through e-file or IRS Free File, vastly reduces tax return errors, as the tax software does the …

5 States

—  Survey: Medicare Beneficiaries at Risk from Card-Replacement Scams TALLAHASSEE – As the federal government undertakes a major initiative to issue new identification cards to the Medicare beneficiaries in Florida and nationwide, an AARP survey finds that a majority of those enrollees are at risk of being victimized by fraud schemes designed to capitalize on the card replacement program. In response, AARP Florida is participating in an education campaign to raise awareness among consumers about Medicare Card scams. Florida’s 4.33 million …

5 States

— FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 14, 2018 CONTACT: Dave Bruns, 850.228.2759, dbruns@aarp.org TALLAHASSEE – AARP Florida issued the following statement today urging Gov. Rick Scott to veto SB 920, adopted in the 2018 Legislature, which puts consumers at higher risk of predatory lending practices by companies making “payday loans.” “We’re asking Gov. Scott to veto this legislation because it’s bad for Florida consumers of all ages, but especially for older Floridians of modest means,” said Jeff Johnson, AARP’s Florida state director. “More …

5 States

— TALLAHASSEE – With tax filing season in full swing statewide, millions of Floridians are grappling with recent changes to tax law enacted by Congress and signed into law by the President earlier this year. But many who are helping to care for older loved ones may not know of tax changes that could save them hundreds of dollars or more, according to a leading AARP Florida volunteer. “First, taxpayers should know that a $500 tax credit is available for dependents …

— St. Petersburg, Fla. — For 50 years, tens of thousands of AARP Foundation volunteers nationwide and nearly 3,000 from across Florida have made older taxpayers a great offer: They’ll help you prepare your annual federal income tax returns – and they’ll do it for free. Starting Feb. 1 through April 17, AARP Foundation will do it again. AARP Foundation volunteers will provide free tax assistance and preparation through its Tax-Aide program. AARP Foundation Tax-Aide is the nation’s largest free tax …

— If you’ve been baffled by your utilities bill — and wondered who makes the rules for Florida power companies — you’re not alone. Millions of Florida residents find utilities issues hard to follow. Regulated by a far-away, low-profile state agency, largely the domain of expensive utilities lawyers and powerful corporations, electric utilities regulations often isn’t familiar ground for consumers. That’s one big reason why AARP Florida has been a leading voice fighting for consumers on utilities across the state and …

5 States

— AARP Florida Director Jeff Johnson warned hundreds of thousands of older Floridians Wednesday that they could lose thousands of dollars in income-tax deductions next year if Congress moves ahead with a U.S. House plan to impose a “health tax.” A House tax plan adopted last month would eliminate a current feature of tax law that allows Americans to deduct some of the cost of high medical expenses from their taxable income. As of 2017, taxpayers can deduct qualified medical expenses …

— According to recent data, a couple retiring this year looks to spend an average of $275,000 on healthcare throughout the course of their retirement. Health care costs are rising faster than inflation and the overall economy, with one in five families reporting difficulty paying medical bills. If you are over the age of 60 and are experiencing financial insecurity from these rising health care costs, SHINE (Serving Health Insurance Needs of Elders) is a free program that may be able …

5 States

— UPDATED: Sept. 12, 2017 (Original post Sept. 15, 2016) TALLAHASSEE – Homeowners beware! Unscrupulous contractors are conning residents into surrendering their home insurance policy claim rights and benefits. In the wake of Hurricane Irma, these instances are sure to grow. Here’s how it works: 1) You get a contractor to agree to repair your home damage. 2) The dishonest contractor convinces you to transfer an Assignment of Benefit agreement in the contractor’s name. 3) The contractor then uses this to …

— Floridians, do you collect Social Security? A new scam is targeting YOU. How It Works: A scammer calls from a 323 area code, posing as a Social Security Administration (SSA) employee. In some instances, the scammer tells the victim he or she is due a cost-of-living adjustment increase in their Social Security benefit. The caller then tries to get the victim to “verify” their Social Security number, name, date of birth, parents’ name and other personal information.If the scammer succeeds, …