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4 Lessons from Successful Physicians on Building a Stable Financial Future

Practicing medicine continues to excel as time progresses. The focus on patients and quality of care, however, can sometimes take a toll on a physicians...

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|Jan 8|magazine7 min read

Practicing medicine continues to excel as time progresses. The focus on patients and quality of care, however, can sometimes take a toll on a physician’s financial preparedness.

Physicians over the age of 60 acknowledge the need to budget not only finances, but also the time for personal financial planning action. Here are their four most important lessons.

Lesson #1: Make the time to spend on your personal finances. 

Physicians over 60 spend more time on their personal finances, and are more likely than young physicians to feel the time they spend is adequate.

Sixty percent of physicians work on their finances quarterly or monthly, versus the 25 percent of physicians under 40 who work on their finances every few years or as the need arises.

Lesson #2: Review and update your estate plan.

Wise physicians advise on having an updated will and end-of-life and medical directives, at the least. Other elements can be added as your career progresses.

Did you know that 68 percent of physicians under 40 don’t have an estate plan at all?

Lesson #3: Understand and review your disability insurance coverage. 

Know if your coverage is “own-occupation” or “own-specialty” and what that means. Also be aware if your benefit is taxable as it can make a big difference in your disability payout.

In general, if your employer pays your disability income insurance premium, your disability benefit will be taxable.

Lesson #4: Work with a trusted financial advisor. 

Get help early in your career to build your knowledge base and comfort level about personal finances and how to reach your goals. Successful physicians advise paying off your medial school loan first and then saving for retirement immediately after.

Information sourced from AMA Insurance 2013 Report on U.S. Physicians’ Financial Preparedness©

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