Why Offshore Trusts Do Make Sense (A Brief Story)

By Jeffrey M. Verdon, J.D. Advising your clients on establishing and funding an offshore asset protection trust (APT) can be challenging. After all, what client wants to spend tens of thousands of dollars to take preventative steps against something they just don’t expect to happen? It is a lot like the decision a person goes through when buying a life insurance policy. I have never met a widow who thought her husband was over insured, but convincing the insured to purchase a policy can be a challenge. So it is with the offshore APT – the client must be sued…

Some Magical Aspects of Life Insurance

By Jonathan G. Blattmachr & Matthew D. Blattmachr Life insurance is one of the least understood financial products in the world. In just a few minutes of study, one can reasonably grasp the concept of equity interests in a business (e.g., common stock, preferred stock), bonds and other forms of debt. Even more complicated financial products, such as derivatives and options can be readily understood. However, even some people who have spent a career in the life insurance industry do not really understand the financial aspects of this product. Indeed, after finishing a lecture on how life insurance “works,” a…

The Whole Story: The True Rate of Return of Permanent Life Insurance

By Jason Oshins, Financial Advisor, MBA Imagine your favorite epic film of all time – Superman, Godfather, Star Wars, or, if you ask your teenage daughter, Hunger Games. Each film draws you into a journey that only can be appreciated as a sum of many crucial parts unveiled methodically. Now imagine kicking back with your overly-buttered popcorn, being told by some sensory overload graphic to silence your cell phone, and watching your film, only to have the reel break after twenty minutes. Would you leave the theater with a full appreciation and understanding of the film’s brilliance? Absolutely not. Similarly,…

A Monthly Meeting You’re Not Allowed to Miss

By Philip J. Kavesh, J.D., LL.M. (Taxation), CFP®, ChFC, California State Bar Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust & Probate Law In an earlier article I talked about the importance of setting goals for the year and clearly communicating them in a motivational way to your associate attorneys and staff at an annual “kickoff” meeting in January. As a follow-up to that meeting, you should also be holding a once a month firm meeting to continue the momentum towards achieving your goals. This monthly firm meeting is a very important one that you simply cannot miss (nor can anyone else)….

Tax Alpha®: What Sophisticated Counselors & Advisors Needs to Know—Part 1 of 2

By Robert S. Keebler, CPA, MST, AEP (Distinguished), CGMA In the world of finance, “Alpha” is often referred to as the value a money manager generates by exceeding a particular benchmark. In the world of financial planning, Tax Alpha® is best defined as the value financial advisors add by reducing the tax burden on portfolio income – “After all, it is what you keep not what you earn that counts.” A thorough knowledge of the intersection between tax and finance will allow an advisor to substantially reduce a client’s overall tax burden. The heart of Tax Alpha® for most clients…

More Clients, Better Clients

By Joseph J. Strazzeri, Esq. Quality referrals are the lifeblood of a growing practice. New clients tend to come from one of four sources: 1) current clients, 2) other advisors, 3) educational events, and 4) the internet. For the practitioner that does the technical work and markets the firm, it is critical to understand whether you want more clients and/or better clients, and to have a plan on how to obtain them – because there is only so much time in a month. Time management and a team-driven, repeatable process offer not only a great business solution but a quality…