Auto-Funded Retirement

FUNDME Auto-Funded Retirement Accounts &

RETIREME Pension Plans

By Dr. Guy McClung

     With a FUNDME retirement account or a RETIREME pension plan, a person or the person’s friends and relatives can provide automatic  incremental funding of the person’s pension plan or retirement account as they wish, whenever they wish. [FUNDME and RETIREME are trademarks].

        These inventions provide systems, methods, and related computer applications in which a person’s retirement account is funded each time a person chooses and engages in an action, or conducts a transaction with an entity. Such funding can be by the person herself or himself for any known type of pension account or any known type of retirement plan or account and/or by another person or entity other than the person who is to benefit later in life.

        A person can engage in a an action or a transaction, e.g. one to purchase an item or service, and, based on the action or transaction, the person receives an amount for funding of for a retirement plan or account or pension account, the amount determined by the fact of the completion of the action or transaction and/or by the amount of money paid (or agreed to be paid) by the person.  The funding amount may be from the person or entity involved in the transaction and/or by another person or entity.

        A person can receives an amount funding the person’s  account by entering an entity’s place of business, by contacting an entity, or by accessing an entity’s electronic presence, e.g., by accessing an entity’s website on the Internet, by Logging In to a website, and/or by searching on a website.  A person can receive an amount funding the person’s account by the action of another person or entity based solely on the discretion of the other person or entity; for example, but not limited to, an entity pays a discretionary amount to the person’s account based on the age of the account; based on the loyalty of the person to the paying entity (loyalty determined by any suitable criteria by the funding entity such as, but not limited to, based on an  amount of money spent by the person, number of transactions entered into) and/or based on an occurrence, e.g. the person’s birthday, wedding day, wedding day anniversary, funeral, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day or the like, specific holiday, birth of a child; based on the entity’s profits; based on an entity’s payment of a dividend; or based on the sheer generosity of the entity, a “Share The Wealth” payment or “STW” payment,  which can be based on any fact, anything or any event.

        The entity may be a company or another person. Such a payment funding a person’s account may be made by an entity that is a bank, debit, or credit card issuer, internet service provider, host system, sponsor, or digital wallet provider, with the payment made based on any suitable criteria, including, but not limited to, the fact that a charge is made to a card, the money amount of a charge, an aggregated amount of money for a plurality of charges, or a plurality of charges.

        In these methods there can be multiple entities who want to take part in persons’ account funding  are associated together (an “associated entity” or “AE”) or under the umbrella of an overseeing entity. Such an association or umbrella may have a distinct public identity so that a person engaging in an action or conducting a transaction need only see or become aware of an entity’s association to know that that entity is one that can fund the person’s account under the system. In certain aspects, the identity of and the existence of an account of a person who has an account according to these inventions are maintained by an overseeing entity and/or by an AE and – whether or not the person is aware in a particular transaction with a particular AE that the particular AE is indeed an AE – the person’s account is appropriately funded since the AE is an AE. Discounts and incentives can be provided based on the number of persons who sign up for a particular type of funding or account.

        In other aspects, an overseeing entity, umbrella entity, or association entity funds a person’s account for an action or event not involving an AE, but which involves an entity outside the association (an “outside entity” or “OE”). In one such case a person purchases an item or service from an OE and the item is made by or the service is provided by an AE. Optionally, the AE itself can fund the account.

        A “pension account” in any system or method herein can be any suitable known pension account, account in a pension plan, retirement plan, or retirement account or to be an account set up specifically for the purposes of funding by a system and method according to these inventions, with improvements according to these inventions. Any pension account according to these inventions may be part of a plan or system that includes:        – no payment of taxes on any of the money (or value, assets, etc.) that funds the plan until withdrawals begin        – tax-deferral of any interest, dividends, or capital gains that accumulate until withdrawal

        The assets (money, value, points, shares, cash equivalents, etc.) of an account funded  may not be cashed out by the account owner until a predetermined date, e.g., upon the owner reaching a certain age ( e.g., but not limited to, 50, 55, 60, 62, 65, 67 or 70.5 years of age), or the account assets are given to a beneficiary (for immediate use by the beneficiary or with a date limitation that prevents a beneficiary from receiving the account balance until a date in the future and/or until the beneficiary reaches a certain age). Transfer of the account assets to a beneficiary may occur upon the death of the account owner or upon a predetermined date being reached; i.e., the account can be for the benefit of the beneficiaries – in whole or in part – rather than for the benefit – in whole or in part – of the account owner. In other aspects, the assets of an account (any according to the present invention) may – in whole or in part – be transferred to the account owner-or to a designated beneficiary-at any time.

        Instead of funding a “pension account,”  the account may  be some other type of account. Also, the account may be legally set up so that it survives certain selected types of events, including, but not limited to, bankruptcy, dissolution, acquisition, merger, sale of company, and change of legal entity, e.g. from corporation to LLP, from LLC to Limited partnership, or vice versa. The accounts herein may be set up to be “hands off”, untouchable by the funding entities; they may also be escrowed and only transferrable later to the owner.

        Beneficiaries may receive funds only upon death of an owner or upon elapse of a stated post-death time; and/or the beneficiary may have no choices about amount and date of funds disbursement. Any account can be funded non-monetarily for example, by points, shares, options, or cash equivalents.

        These inventions provide a method and a system in which an account of a person is funded during an accumulation period. “Funding” means and includes the funding done by the person whose account it is and/or by another person or entity, such funding including any funding technique or method  according to these inventions based on any funding action, event, or transaction; and in particular aspects “funding” includes the transfer or deposit into an account of money (or value; e.g., but not limited to points, shares, cash equivalents, etc.) based on the use of a network (e.g., the Internet; e.g., a transaction done in e-commerce) for a transaction and/or the use of an electronic “wallet” (e.g., a smart wallet, a digital wallet, a mobile wallet, a cellphone-based wallet, and/or a cloud-based wallet).

         Funding of a pension account according to the present invention can be based on the use of electronic money (e-money) of electronically accessing an electronic wallet or service entity, setting and storing the value of money electronically (so that it takes the role of cash in trade) and using the e-money in a transaction. Depending on where the cash value is stored, the e-money is classified into IC e-money (integrated circuit) card type of e-money and network type e-money.

         The IC card is a card (e.g., but not limited to, credit card size) with built-in IC chips or other electronic devices for storing cash value and/or information in the form of electronic data and/or codes, e.g., so-called “smart cards”.

         A funding according to these inventions based on or due to such “network” activity, use of e-money, or “wallet” use can be funding of an amount of money (or value) automatically transferred to the account based on use of the network action, use of e-money, and/or use of the “wallet” in a transaction.

        For any funding method according to these inventions, whether it is a recharge method or any method described herein according to the present invention, upon an event (including transaction) occurring that effects a funding of an account of a subscriber or account owner, the funding may be from an account of the subscriber or owner himself or herself, so that every time an event occurs, the person is automatically funding his or her own account. Such funding can be at any set amount and can be based on the occurrence of one event or on the occurrence of a plurality of events, and/or on an event at a certain monetary level, on a plurality of events at a certain monetary level, and/or on a total monetary amount which is the sum of the monetary amounts for a plurality of events.

        These inventions provide computer-implemented methods for a funding an account including: using one or more computer servers to execute software instructions stored on a computer-readable medium, the software instruction causing the one or more computer servers to execute at least the steps of any method for an account according to these inventions. In certain aspects, these inventions provide a system for effecting any method according to these inventions for funding an account including: a computer processor; a computer readable medium comprising instructions executable by said computer processor for effecting the steps of the method executable by a computer. In any such system and method, a pension account may be a tax-deferred account that is one of a 401(k), 403(b), 457, and 409A account.

        The basic raison d’etre of most business entities is to make money and, hopefully, to make a profit. Diametrically opposed to this motive is the giving away of money simply out of human charity or goodness. Presented with the choices of paying a dividend to shareholders or giving the dividend money to the needy, most entities will ignore the needy. For such reasons a “Share The Wealth” funding of a person’s account according to the present invention is a nonobvious improvement to current funding methods – the dominant business motive teaches away from giving money away free for no reason. This is why the “Share The Wealth” funding of a person’s  account according to these inventions will capture the hearts and minds of the public and this is one reason why funded accounts according to these inventions will be successful.

        With incredulity, persons who have their retirement funded this way will say “I can’t believe it is true . . . they actually gave me money!”      Such real generosity will engender customer loyalty. Such “generosity” can be practiced by any entity that can fund an account according to these inventions.

        These inventions provide a method and a system in which a retirement account of a person is funded during an accumulation period. “Funding” means and includes the funding done by the person whose account it is and/or by another person or entity, such funding including any funding technique or method according to these inventions based on any funding action, event, or transaction disclosed herein.

        These inventions provide a system and method for providing a user with one or with a plurality of periodic retirement income payments, the methods including funding of an account and, in certain aspects, optionally the steps of receiving an input including a retirement date and/or the step of calculating the retirement date, and the length of an accumulation period defined by the retirement date and a current age of the user; receiving a funding payment amount from the user and/or from another person or entity during the accumulation period; optionally investing the received funding payment amount in any suitable manner, including but not limited to, in the account in a manner consistent with one or more predefined objectives during the accumulation period resulting in a retirement income amount. The process can further include the step of transmitting the retirement income amount to at least one of the user and a designated beneficiary (or beneficiaries) or a receiver at a designated time after the end of the accumulation period. Optionally, the account accumulates a non-monetary amount of value indicators (points, shares, etc.) which are translated into money and/or things and/or services when the designated time is reached.

                These inventions, in certain aspects, provide a method and system for funding a pension account for which monetary funding contributions are managed for deferred retirement savings. In certain aspects, these inventions provide a system and method of managing funding amounts (money and/or value), e.g., monetary contributions for a pension account that has a deferred payment system for retirement; and, optionally, wherein a consumer (and/or another person or entity) funds the account by making contributions into the account, and/or wherein the process is not tied to any particular entity, employer, and/or employment status.

        Determination of a funding amount for a person’s retirement account may be based, in whole or in part on the use of a particular entity or payment provider, on the fact of accessing the payment provider, seller or merchant identity, product manufacturer or service provider identity, on using a particular payment source (e.g., bank or credit card issuer), and/or on the number or money amount of purchase(s).

          Determination of a funding amount for funding of an account associated with the user can be based on: the identity of the payment provider, the activation of the provider’s  smart wallet, the store identity, the card issuer and/or the debit card issuer.       

                Persons attending an event (e.g., a game, a concert, a race, a wedding, a funeral,  a competition, a graduation, a baptism, a confirmation, a bar mitzvah, a bat mitzbah, a track meet, a competition, a reunion, a convention, a fund raiser, an auction;  the birth of a child or grandchild, neice or nephew; birthday party, anniversary party,) have, via their cellphones, smartphones, and/or personal computers (e.g., laptops, netbooks, tablets), access to effect funding of an account of a particular person or persons (or multiple accounts of multiple persons or charities) during the event. The money for funding can come for any selected account of the person or entity that is doing the funding (e.g., but not limited to, from a checking account, from a savings account, charged to a credit card account, and from a debit account). The funded account can be a retirement plan or a pension account.

        In one aspect, on the cellphone or computer and/or on publicly viewable screen(s) at the event, a total amount of funding of the account in real time is made available to all at the event. A person (which can be an individual human person or a legal person such as a company or corporation) provides a funding amount to the account by using the cellphone or personal computer. In one particular aspect, once the person has downloaded an application (“app”) at the event (or before the event)  simply pressing one button (or key) or a series of buttons (or keys) identifies the person and connects the person to the funding system with respect to the specific account to be funded; the system identifies the person (or entity) and then the person selects the amount of funding desired and, upon indicating “FINISH” or “COMPLETE” or “FUND” or some similar command, the system effects funding of the pension account in the desired amount.               

        Any method herein  can be effected and/or facilitated by a computer application, or “app,” that effects some, most, or all of the steps of the method and/or provides the necessary connections and/or communication between a person (or entity) and other components and apparatuses and devices used in a  system that effects account funding.  Such an “app” in certain aspects facilitates the funding and identifies the person; accesses the appropriate systems, software and servers; provides communication between the person and the systems, software, and servers; receives and transmits the funding request; communicates with the funding source (e.g  entity that provides and/or administrates a checking account, savings account, credit card account, electronic wallet); effects the transfer of the amount; and finalizes the funding of the account. Optionally the app provides confirmation to the person.

        Everyone attending an event can be, possibly, the person (or persons) whose account is funded and the person can be chosen at random by any suitable method (e.g., but not limited to, by seat number or ticket stub number). Optionally, prior to or during funding, a person can pay a fee to be in the pool of person whose pension account will be funded. In one example, 85,000 people attend a NASCAR race. As each person with a cellphone or personal computer enters the race location (or before) they can download an app which enters them in a pool from which will be selected one person (or multiple persons) whose account can be funded during the race. Details about the person are made publicly available once the person is chosen, e.g. via publicly viewable screens and/or sound systems and/or via cellphones and/or personal computers. As the race unfolds, anyone who has downloaded the appropriate app can fund the chosen person’s account. Running totals of the funding level are made public. Optionally, before funding ceases, the total amount to that time is displayed and a countdown indicator is displayed to let the people know that at a predetermined time the ability to fund the account will cease. Such funding opportunities may also be made to persons not present at the actual race site so that anyone can fund the account during the race. There may also be an option so that a person not at the race site can have a pension account funded in his or her name, even though he or she is not present at the race (and, of course, these options apply to any other event).

        In one scenario for funding related to an event in a method according to the present invention, the identity of the person whose account is being funded is kept secret either until the event is concluded or up to a certain time; for example, and not by way of limitation,  at a soccer game when two-thirds of the time has elapsed; at a football game when the game is over; at a baseball game at the end of the fifth inning; at a race when a pre-set number of laps or miles has been completed; when the event is half sold out; when the event is sold out; when a pre-set percentage of the event is soldout; at a basketball game when a certain total score is reached; at a concert before the last song or after the star or star group is first introduced; and only when a pre-set amount of funding is reached, e.g., at a charity fundraiser when $100,000 has been reached either for the charity or for the pension account of one of the donors or donees.

                Advertisers, celebrities, and sponsors can be part of a funding method of these inventions in several ways. In one aspect, a company or celebrity can do an initial funding of an account, e.g., Coca-Cola Co.’s name flashes on a screen when the funding account status is first displayed, e.g., with an announcement such as “Coca-Cola proudly contributes the initial $10,000 to the pension account;”  or “Gary Sinise starts this education funding account with $5,000;” or “Bank of American gets this effort off the ground with $1,000.” In other aspects, a company or celebrity can match any funding done at a certain level by an individual; for example,   “Motorola has just matched the $1000 donated by John Jones'” or “Rush Limbaugh has contributed another $100,000 to match the $100,000 given by Sean Hannity;”  or “Now Ann Coulter has funded the account to the tune of $200,000 matching both Rush and Sean.”  Optionally, a company or entity can announce matching funding at any time during the funding method at an event. For example, after the halftime of a football game, the announcement is made that “Lowes will now match any funding done in the third quarter of the game” or “Angie Harmon will match any funding done when the Cowboy offense is on the field.”

        Funding may be added to or matched by a competitor or by a winner or by a loser. For example, the Dallas Cowboys beat the Green Bay Packers 67-3 and before the game the Cowboys have announced that, if they win, they will match any amount of funding of an account (or, e.g., a percentage, e.g., half). Alternatively, the Green Bay Packers agree to an additional $2,000,000 of fuding if they lose by over 60 points. Funding may also be made dependent on an something occurring, such as, but not limited to, a home run, a touchdown, a 70 yard punt, a soccer goal, a triple play, a safety, lapping a competitor in a race, a hat trick, a seventy yard field goal,  a double play, a no-hitter, a perfect game, win in sudden death, win of a championship, win of a race, etc.