- Our goal is always simplification. We seek the simplest solutions that meet your needs. We write and talk in plain English.
- We are not money managers, but we encourage clients to focus on money management issues. We work with you, your financial advisor and accountant on investment and tax issues. We ask clients to focus on the question, who will manage if I cannot? Choices differ based on family dynamics and the nature and extent of assets. Trustee (and successor Trustee) selection is a vital issue for all clients.
- We do not prepare tax returns, but we often review them and work with a client’s accountant on valuation and other tax-return issues. We find this approach most cost effective for the client.
- We concentrate on the way you title your assets and designate beneficiaries. Many estate plans fail because of mistakes in asset titling and beneficiary designation. Inadvertent mistakes here can have tragic results.
- We discourage Uniform Transfers to Minors’ Act gifts because the beneficiary will receive assets outright at age eighteen or twenty-one. These are very vulnerable ages at which even small amounts of unearned money can bring tragic results. We can help you use simple trusts instead. If you have a minor child and no will, you are guilty of neglect as you would be with lapsed fire insurance.
- When you use a bank or trust company as a trustee, we recommend you also name individual trust protector(s) who can replace the institution because institutions change over time. If you use a non-family individual trustee, we also recommend trust protectors. If we serve as trustee, we will insist that trust protectors be authorized to replace us. Trust protectors can be family members or unrelated individuals in whom you have confidence.