Planning & Investments

How We Proceed in Planning

Our services are unique in the fact a retainer or planning fee is not immediately sought.  We believe a relationship between a client and an advisor should be a relationship that will stand the test of time, therefore, we will have several sessions with a potential client, gathering data, discussing important financial issues and potential strategies leading up to a working “rough draft” stage.  At that point, we feel both the client and advisor should realize that a good working relationship has been developed.  A client’s satisfaction is always our top priority in all circumstances.

We have always felt that the best approach to working with clients is by the “no surprises” doctrine, where any services or charges will be discussed and agreed upon well in advance.  If our services fall into areas such as insurance or investments, we will always disclose and discuss how our representation may lead to compensation.

The Planning Process Steps 

The process is just that:  a process.  By following a set procedure, we can more readily gather sufficient information, analyze that information, and formulate a series of recommendations, which, if implemented, could greatly enhance your opportunities to meet your financial goals and tax objectives.  The actual steps we go through with each of our client are as follows: 

1.   Initial Conference - Involves exchange of information regarding the process, preliminary  discussion of client objectives, and the gathering of some basic financial and taxation information.

2.   Preliminary Case Analysis - Involves the determination of the level of service for which the client  qualifies.

3.   Data Gathering Conferences - Involves the in-depth discussion of client objectives, collection of all financial and tax documents required for analysis, and collection of other relevant subjective and objective data. 

4.   Data Analysis - Involves analysis of all financial documents, taxation history, subjective and objective data, and development of Presentation Condition analytical reports.

5.   Verification Process - Involves review of the Present Condition analytical reports, notation of any additions, deletions, or corrections to be made, and acceptance by client that the reports accurately represent the current financial and tax conditions.

6.    Plan Phase - Involves the development of an action plan including the formulation of observations regarding the client’s current condition, assumptions made, recommendations for financial and tax strategies to be implemented, and the results to be expected upon implementation.

7.    Plan Presentation Phase - Involves delivery of the written observations, discussion of the recommendations, and development of a schedule of implementation of plan recommendations.

8.    Plan Implementation - Involves meeting with other advisors (attorney, accountant, actuaries, etc.) to begin implementing plan recommendations, identifying and acquiring appropriate products (investments, insurance, etc.).  Review update cycle is also agreed upon by the client at this time.

9.    Informal Review - Involves periodic contact with client for discussion of specific problems, tax changes, and financial developments, as part of Review Update Services.

10.  Formal Review - Involves an update of client condition including the creation of a new set of Present Condition analytical reports.  This review also measures implemented financial and tax strategies against goals and may re-prioritize remaining action plan.

Documents Needed For Financial Strategies  

The following documents will be needed for the purpose of study and analysis in an effort to prepare a personal financial plan for you.  It is understood that this material will be treated confidentially and returned as soon as the planning process is completed, or at an earlier time if requested.

1. Income Tax Returns:  Two years prior

2. Personal Employment Benefit Statements:  For you and spouse

3. Company Benefit Plan Booklets (Group Benefits & Pension Plans):  For your employer and spouse’s employer

4. Wills: For you and spouse

5. Trust Arrangements:  For you and spouse

6. Business Arrangements:  Buy/sell, Deferred Compensation, Current   Financial Statements, Stock Options/Bonus Plan

7. Insurance & Annuity Contracts:  Life Insurance, Health Insurance, Hospital & Major Medical, Disability Insurance, Automobile Insurance, Property & Casualty

8. Bank, Brokerage, and Other Investment Statements:  Brokerage Statements, Mutual Fund Statements, CD Statements, Limited Partnerships, IRA Statements, Other Investment Statements

9. Most Recent Payroll Stub:  For you and spouse