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    Thread: 2,400 Millionaires Collected Unemployment in 2009

    1. Member GeoffD's Avatar
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      10-05-2012 10:27 AM #26
      Quote Originally Posted by tjl View Post
      However, there would be a one-time conversion cost in the trillions of dollars converting the Social Security promises to a true defined-contribution (or defined-benefit) pension plan.
      You could only do it for the youngest workers.

      Besides, it ain't gonna happen. With income stratification, half the country would retire in poverty. The country would go broke funding SSI for the 1/6th of the country that is retired but didn't have enough income in their lifetime to fund a self-funded program. The whole point of the Social Security program was to end elderly poverty.

      soapbox

      I make pretty good income. Most of my adult life, I took the libertarian stance where people should fend for themselves. As I got older and saw more of the real world, I realized that something pushing half the US population isn't born smart enough, healthy enough, or with the opportunity to break out of the poverty cycle to make it without some sort of safety net. With the erosion of the middle class, it's only getting worse. I conclude that the reality of 21st century global economics are that we're going to have income stratification. The payback for living in a country that offers all the economic opportunity is that you have to fund a safety net for those who can't possibly take advantage of the opportunity. The working class needs health care. The working class needs to be able to survive when they're elderly. I think most of us agree that the safety net ensures the working class actually works rather than sitting around collecting a check even if it's picking trash by the roadside or emptying bed pans at a nursing home.

      /soapbox

    2. Senior Member AZGolf's Avatar
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      10-05-2012 02:41 PM #27
      I maintain that you cannot convert SS retirement into a defined contribution plan simply due to the fact most people cannot manage large sums of money responsibly, period. The average time for a major prize winner ($500k and up) to blow all their money is something like 3.5 years. $500k is probably roughly what most people would end up with in a defined contribution plan. Clearly running out of money after 3.5 glorious years of living the sweet life of cruises and RV rentals around the country is not the solution. I'm glad that 401k plans exist for those who are responsible enough to use them, but pensions and SS retirement's defined benefit plan are what everyone else needs.

    3. Senior Member beng's Avatar
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      10-05-2012 04:06 PM #28
      Quote Originally Posted by AZGolf View Post
      I maintain that you cannot convert SS retirement into a defined contribution plan simply due to the fact most people cannot manage large sums of money responsibly, period. The average time for a major prize winner ($500k and up) to blow all their money is something like 3.5 years. $500k is probably roughly what most people would end up with in a defined contribution plan. Clearly running out of money after 3.5 glorious years of living the sweet life of cruises and RV rentals around the country is not the solution. I'm glad that 401k plans exist for those who are responsible enough to use them, but pensions and SS retirement's defined benefit plan are what everyone else needs.
      Thats why you'd have to give people the illusion of choice by providing only age based risk tolerance adjusted investment options. Someone who's 62, wouldn't be able to move their money into an S&P500 index fund because they got a hot tip.
      1 3 4 5 7 8 8 9 10 15 16 23 32 37 42 44 49

      "I don't know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve"

    4. 11-01-2012 12:34 PM #29
      Surprised i missed this thread...

      The company I work for does IT systems consulting/installations/support. We have a customer that recently asked us to look at an issue on his home computer. After the issue was resolved, he wanted to make sure his Scott trade (or maybe it was Schwab) account would come up in Internet Explorer. Anyway, he pulls up his portfolio and it shows something like 5.6 million dollars! -that's a lot of money to me. He said he had double that prior to 2008.

      On topic, our client later tells me that he is on unemployment, and that he planned to ride it for as long as he could get it. He said he used it as recreation money (eating out, golf, movies, etc.)

      The strange part is that he owned his own business and just recently closed it voluntarily (may have even sold it) so I'm not sure how he could get unemployment.

    5. Member GTiTOM's Avatar
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      11-25-2012 09:25 PM #30
      Haven't seen this mentioned yet, but something to clarify:

      "2,400 people who received unemployment insurance in 2009 lived in households with annual
      incomes of $1 million or more"

      I'm guessing 2,399 were young people laid off and forced to move back home, but who didn't want to 'live off' their parents while they figured out next moves. Filing unemployment is a pain in the ass -- I can't imagine it even being worth the time for someone making $1M a year to bother doing the paperwork to get $400/week, never mind checking in every week and keeping a log of work activity.

      I was in a similar situation last year as well. My ex-wife is rich. I am not. Her dad bought her the house we lived in, and it was still in his name - so we were technically in a HH with income north of $1M/yr. She also had assets in her name well into the 7 figures that she didn't actually have access too. So on a day-to-day basis, I actually needed the unemployment after getting laid off so I didn't have to dig into savings (pay my student loans, pay my car repairs, utilities, etc), even though on paper we were 1%'ers.

    6. 11-25-2012 10:18 PM #31
      Quote Originally Posted by GTiTOM View Post
      Filing unemployment is a pain in the ass -- I can't imagine it even being worth the time for someone making $1M a year to bother doing the paperwork to get $400/week, never mind checking in every week and keeping a log of work activity.
      In GA, unemployment claims were stupid easy. I was on unemployment for a few months while in college. I did have to go the local Department of Labor and wait in line for 2 hours to get registered. However, after doing that, I simply had to log in each week to the GA DOL website and submit my claim electronically. I then had my claim amount direct-deposited into my checking account. The entire process took all of about 2 minutes and was completely honor system based. I never set foot in a local DOL office in the 5-6 months I collected.

      IIRC, there were only a couple of questions you had to answer when submitting your claim online:

      Are you working?
      Are you actively pursuing work?

    7. Member GeoffD's Avatar
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      11-25-2012 10:50 PM #32
      Quote Originally Posted by Brett92 View Post
      In GA, unemployment claims were stupid easy. I was on unemployment for a few months while in college. I did have to go the local Department of Labor and wait in line for 2 hours to get registered. However, after doing that, I simply had to log in each week to the GA DOL website and submit my claim electronically. I then had my claim amount direct-deposited into my checking account. The entire process took all of about 2 minutes and was completely honor system based. I never set foot in a local DOL office in the 5-6 months I collected.

      IIRC, there were only a couple of questions you had to answer when submitting your claim online:

      Are you working?
      Are you actively pursuing work?
      This, except that I had to file in-person and do a 5 minute interview.

      I wasn't even living in the state where I was collecting. I went to an unemployment office once before they changed over to direct deposit to deal with a lost unemployment check.

    8. Member GTiTOM's Avatar
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      11-27-2012 10:19 AM #33
      Quote Originally Posted by Brett92 View Post
      In GA, unemployment claims were stupid easy. I was on unemployment for a few months while in college. I did have to go the local Department of Labor and wait in line for 2 hours to get registered. However, after doing that, I simply had to log in each week to the GA DOL website and submit my claim electronically. I then had my claim amount direct-deposited into my checking account. The entire process took all of about 2 minutes and was completely honor system based. I never set foot in a local DOL office in the 5-6 months I collected.

      IIRC, there were only a couple of questions you had to answer when submitting your claim online:

      Are you working?
      Are you actively pursuing work?
      That's basically how it was in Mass. It took a couple hours on the phone the first time, though. And thenI I twice got 'randomly' selected for extra things. I had to go to a career day where they told us how to write resumes. Then I had to go back for a 1 on 1 follow-up where they reviewed my job activity and suggested I "get on linked-in --- have you heard of it? It's a new site where you can make connections". More than once I had to call when my direct deposit wasn't deposited. You technically needed to keep a log of at least 3 job search activities each week, although I didn't keep very good records after I was picked for a consultation --- I figured the odds were pretty good I wouldn't be randomly selected.

      I mean, it was totally worth the time and effort for me, even with the extra tax reporting i needed to do. In fact, it made me think that it should be a little harder in general. But if I personally had a couple million in the bank, I wouldn't have bothered. I mean, it's seriously less than the interest on $5M in a 0.75% checking account.

    9. 11-27-2012 11:47 AM #34
      Quote Originally Posted by GTiTOM View Post
      That's basically how it was in Mass. It took a couple hours on the phone the first time, though. And thenI I twice got 'randomly' selected for extra things. I had to go to a career day where they told us how to write resumes. Then I had to go back for a 1 on 1 follow-up where they reviewed my job activity and suggested I "get on linked-in --- have you heard of it? It's a new site where you can make connections". More than once I had to call when my direct deposit wasn't deposited. You technically needed to keep a log of at least 3 job search activities each week, although I didn't keep very good records after I was picked for a consultation --- I figured the odds were pretty good I wouldn't be randomly selected.
      Wow, that seems like a lot of work (relative to GA ), but that's the way it should be IMO. However, once I think about it, I could've been excluded from some of the extra tasks because I was in college full-time while I was collecting.

      The crazy part was I started collecting in Dec 2008 and graduated/started work in May 2009, so I stopped collecting. However, I got letters from the DOL until mid 2011 saying that my unemployment benefits were being extended if I needed it. So, I think I could've have been on unemployment for like 2 years (or more)!

    10. Member Tornado2dr's Avatar
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      11-27-2012 04:48 PM #35
      Quote Originally Posted by Brett92 View Post
      Wow, that seems like a lot of work (relative to GA ), but that's the way it should be IMO. However, once I think about it, I could've been excluded from some of the extra tasks because I was in college full-time while I was collecting.

      The crazy part was I started collecting in Dec 2008 and graduated/started work in May 2009, so I stopped collecting. However, I got letters from the DOL until mid 2011 saying that my unemployment benefits were being extended if I needed it. So, I think I could've have been on unemployment for like 2 years (or more)!
      When the auditors came calling for repayment of un-deserved unemployment benefits...you probably would have regretted it.

    11. 11-28-2012 08:26 AM #36
      Quote Originally Posted by Tornado2dr View Post
      When the auditors came calling for repayment of un-deserved unemployment benefits...you probably would have regretted it.
      No, I meant I was surprised I could have received it that long if I was unemployed, not that I still could've received it while working. I always assumed unemployment had a 6 month +/- limit. I knew the government had extended, but damn 2.5-3 years seems like a long time for unemployment.
      Last edited by Brett92; 11-28-2012 at 08:31 AM.

    12. Member GeoffD's Avatar
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      11-28-2012 10:24 AM #37
      Quote Originally Posted by Brett92 View Post
      No, I meant I was surprised I could have received it that long if I was unemployed, not that I still could've received it while working. I always assumed unemployment had a 6 month +/- limit. I knew the government had extended, but damn 2.5-3 years seems like a long time for unemployment.
      That 2.5-3 years isn't consecutive. I think the max is 99 weeks if you live in a high unemployment state. If you became unemployed right now, it would be 73 weeks in a high unemployment state assuming Congress funds that in 2013.


    13. 11-28-2012 10:59 AM #38
      ^ Ah, gotcha - makes sense.

    14. 12-01-2012 06:12 AM #39
      and yet they want to get rid of public assistance

      guess the rich only want to get richer, even by unethical means

    15. Member GeoffD's Avatar
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      12-01-2012 08:11 AM #40
      Quote Originally Posted by deagle View Post
      and yet they want to get rid of public assistance

      guess the rich only want to get richer, even by unethical means
      Why is it unethical for a high paid wealthy person to collect from the Unemployment Insurance program? At least for the first 26 weeks, the program is 100% funded by employers.

      I collected about $25K out of the program when I was unemployed a few years ago. I also got my COBRA health insurance subsidized for about 8 months. Back then, everyone had hiring freezes or were laying people off and there were no jobs. Most years, I pay about $40,000 in Federal income tax so I pay in far more than I could possibly ever get out of the system. I don't have any qualms about using the safety net. That's what it's there for.

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      12-01-2012 07:24 PM #41
      Quote Originally Posted by GeoffD View Post
      This, except that I had to file in-person and do a 5 minute interview.

      I wasn't even living in the state where I was collecting. I went to an unemployment office once before they changed over to direct deposit to deal with a lost unemployment check.
      I've had employees collecting uc while still working for me. We pay out the benefit while fighting the bureaucracy to prove that they are in fact still employed.
      Man...sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived. - Tenzin Gyatso

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