We know that achieving your financial success most likely included discipline, experience, and foresight. By integrating these characteristics in your unique way, your wealth has grown in size and complexity. This means that as a high net worth individual, or family, you face greater challenges in the preservation, protection and eventual transfer of your wealth. Do not settle for rubber-stamp solutions to complicated issues. Our advisors understand the intricacies of proper planning by designing customized solutions that are tested and proven to respond to your needs, objectives, and preferences. We help accomplish this with our Total Wealth Roadmap™.
Our financial planning process, Total Wealth Solutions®, begins with an understanding of your needs, goals, and aspirations. This process will address every area of your financial life-investments, insurance, estate liquidity, tax considerations, and charitable giving. Together, we’ll create a long-term strategy that helps you (1) manage risk, (2) improve potential performance, (3) keep your plan on track with your goals, and (4) monitor and adjust your plan as your needs and circumstances change.
Estate Preservation and Wealth Transfer
We develop opportunities for successful people to preserve and enhance the value of what they have devoted their lifetimes to build. Whether you’ve created a substantial estate or own a prospering business, we recognize your desire to maintain control and direction of their assets and enterprises. We understand the market pressures and governmental forces that threaten to undermine their worth and growth potential. We respect the personal nature of the decision making that must be done. We help preserve their right to determine the disposition of their wealth.
Family Wealth Counseling’s estate preservation and wealth transfer specialists can help you address a broad range of issues, meet the special needs of individual family members, and work with your attorneys and/or accountants to ensure the transfer of assets to family and the charities of your choice over time. We will be using strategies designed to leverage your assets while minimizing the effects of taxes and market risks in the near and long-term, including special consideration for business succession and the liquidity issues entrepreneur’s face that have significant wealth tied up in their companies.
Family Wealth Counseling
Family Wealth Counselors strive to address the social, spiritual and emotional aspects of your lifestyle before addressing the financial aspects. This has to do with helping our clients to more broadly define what wealth means to them, what it means to their families, and how it can be used to either build family values or, in some cases, how it can destroy them.
When we ask people what it is they wish for their children and grandchildren, rarely do they say, “To make them rich.” More commonly their response is, “That they be happy, well adjusted and fulfilled, upstanding members of society.” If this is true, then the real question is, “How do we use our wealth to achieve that end? Is the answer only to get them as much money as possible, or could it be to get them an adequate amount of capital to have a safety net, but more importantly to put them in charge of distributing the family’s social capital into the community?” Is it possible to direct money for philanthropic causes to help make the world a better place and not have the very act change the person doing the directing? It is the skillful blending of financial, social, and spiritual/emotional aspects of Family Wealth Planning that we believe makes Family Wealth Counseling a unique planning process.
Planning for Global Citizens
When we’re first introduced to a Global Citizen in need of planning, we see several common themes. Most have had some experience with a financial services firm already, and have encountered two key challenges.
First, the advice they’ve received was isolated to one area of planning – legal, tax, investments or insurance. There was little or no mention of integrating the work across multiple planning disciplines. Likewise, the advice was isolated to the United States or their country of origin, lacking cross-border wisdom and research.
Second, in search of strategic thinking, they were met with a singular product solution only. Lacking awareness that other opportunities existed, they purchased it. The experience was purely transactional and not all that fulfilling for successful people who are used to thinking “globally” with multiple solutions.
Our specialized approach to working with Global Citizens honors several unique characteristics. Unlike the traditional trajectory of being from and living in the same country one’s whole life, our Global Citizen clients move from country to country with ease. The simple question, “Where are you from?” can have multiple reference points. Likewise, the concept of risk and subsequent risk management, in planning has a unique meaning, expanding beyond the financial markets and into the geopolitical status and the geography of family ties.
As such our planning process meets you where you are with different questions and bigger opportunities. Seeing the world as a basket of investment options, we help you take advantage of favorable arbitrage opportunities. Therefore we’re able to operate from a unique vantage point so that you can navigate your life through our cross-disciplinary planning process on a global basis.
Life Insurance Acquisition
We believe that a primary reason people steer away from discussing life insurance is that many life insurance practitioners use traditional approaches, treating life insurance as a transaction. These approaches match a numeric need to a product-based solution, seemingly without full consideration for the goals and vision of the people at the heart of the plan. Often for high-impact individuals and affluent families, everyone at the planning table seems clear that a need exists: everyone, that is, except you.
When we’re invited in to discuss life insurance with a high-impact individual or affluent family, it’s typically driven by a desire to safeguard someone or something – livelihoods, families or companies. We seek first to understand: what is the broader vision around what you or your company wish to protect? Why is that vision important?
Then and only then, we explore the range of possibilities and options that align with your stated vision. In the process of researching relevant and elegant solutions, we determine whether life insurance makes sense, or whether a different solution may offer better alignment between need and strategy.
Importantly, this speaks to the difference between having an insurance dialogue with an insurance firm and having it with a planning firm. If a firm has one primary tool to offer, there’s a general inclination to validate the need for that tool. In contrast, as a planning firm, we seek to arrive at your ideal outcome.
Life Insurance Post-Acquisition Management
Many of the savviest people we meet aren’t aware that life insurance is a dynamic asset that requires diligent post-purchase management. Similar to investment portfolios, life insurance illustrations are hypothetical assumptions based on what may occur in the financial markets, and legal and tax environments.
During our thorough annual review process, we analyze your original intentions at the point of purchase. These include both your vision and Risk-Points and the financial projections embedded in the original life insurance portfolio. Then we review your policies’ historic performance over the previous 12-months as well as their projected future performance based on current market conditions. We confirm your policies are on track to be there when you need them. If not, we make prudent adjustments.
This comes back to the difference between a planning firm and an insurance-only firm. As a planning firm, founded in 1962, today we find ourselves delivering on the promises made to our first client-families by the founder of our firm. If these policies hadn’t been proactively managed through diligent, annual Post-purchase Due Care, they may not have performed as intended at the time of need.