Collaborative Advisory Teams : Insight Wealth | Little Rock, AR

Collaborative Advisory Teams

A highly collaborative Team of Advisors is vital. Collaboration is when your Advisors play together like an orchestra – so you can enjoy the music of planning success. Legal, tax, estate, business and other facets of planning are each so volatile and complex that no single Advisor can optimally help you without coordinating with your other Advisors.

Why collaboration is so vital

If your Estate planning attorney crafts irrevocable trusts to protect assets and save taxes (estate, state income, etc.) determining which assets are held in those trusts will have a significant impact on the net overall results. If the assets are marketable securities or life insurance, that is a decision that needs to be made primarily (never entirely) by your Wealth Advisor or Life Insurance Professional.

That decision should not be made entirely by your wealth manager or life insurance professional either. These professionals must understand the nuances of the trusts to optimize planning.

Your CPA needs to be involved to address state income tax planning, coordinating grantor trust gain/loss harvesting with your personal tax status, etc.

If your estate is quite large, and/or your planning complex, you need a team not a hot-shot, lone wolf, non-collaborator.

Who’s the Team?

While an Estate Planning Attorney, CPA, Wealth Advisor and Insurance Professional are vital components to most teams, the composition of your team will vary over time as your needs and circumstances change.

As you age or as health issues worsen, a Care Manager may become a critical player. This team member would be vital in creating a care plan and quantifying the costs of the plan.

Many donors prefer to be actively involved in their giving to accomplish specific social or charitable goals. A charitable giving professional, e.g., gift officer or CAP (Chartered Advisor in Philanthropy) should be a part of the team when appropriate.

Your Team should reflect your needs.

Why Some Advisors Don’t Play Nicely in the Collaboration Sandbox

Ego, control, money. You want knowledgeable Advisors, so self-confidence is inevitable. But the Advisors job is to do what is in your best interest, you the client, even if that means a certain Advisor not being the “big cheese.”

Making Collaboration Happen

While the United team is the only way to fly, if everyone doesn’t make a concerted effort to make it happen, it won’t. Clients should authorize and direct advisors in writing to collaborate. It may or may not cost more.

Better planning and administration of your plan will cost less than a disjointed plan. For advisors that just won’t do it, replace them..

Fostering Collaboration

Advisors should circulate a summary memo in draft form following any meeting or phone conference they have with the client to the Team before sending the finalized copy to the client. This gives everyone a chance for input and keeps all Advisors in the “loop”.

Authorize an annual Advisor web conference without the client. These can be quick but get everyone on the team up to speed inexpensively with great accountability.

1 with permission. Martin Shenkman, CPA,MBA,PFS,AEP,JD
“Practical Planner” Vol. 11, Issue 1 | Jan-Mar, 2017