Others feel it would only take some educating to get workers prepared. Federal law already requires employers with 401(k) plans to educate workers on retirement savings, but what's needed, Fragasso says, is a better definition of what type of education is required. "They understand what to do when you give them the right education," he says. "Even your mailroom boy will make the right choices given the right models."

Joseph Murtagh, president of The Source financial planning firm in Goshen, N.Y., says one reason people are neglecting their retirement savings is because they view Social Security as a fallback. By giving them a role in their Social Security savings-he wants to see two-thirds of contributions managed by the individuals themselves-it will give people an incentive to learn, he says. "It's the chicken or the egg question," he says. "Is the government, by taking this position with Social Security, in effect saying to people, 'We'll take care of you?' Is that encouraging people to behave irresponsibly?"

Some planners feel that while Social Security will have to be dealt with, the most serious issue facing retirees in America is actually health-care costs. David Diesslin, of Diesslin & Associates in Fort Worth, Texas, feels it will have the most impact on retirees. "I think it has the potential of being the more onerous," he says. "It has the highest inflation rate and the most unanswered questions."

First « 1 2 3 » Next