While taking inventory of your individual financial circumstances, have you considered what’ll happen to your hard earned assets upon your demise? Have you given sufficient thought to the process by which the beneficiaries and heirs to your estate will come to inherit those assets? Will they have to deal with the nightmare of probate or outlandish estate taxes? These are just some of the important questions that can be answered through facilitating your own succession planning. But have you ever stopped and considered whether or not your advisor has executed a plan for their firm and clients? As registered investment advisory firms continue to grow and evolve, the idea of advisor succession planning continues to become more and more prevalent. There are many reasons why it is crucial for your advisor to have their own succession planning in place as well as certain questions that need to be answered by your advisor.
Advisor succession planning has recently become an important consideration of financial advisory firms and rightfully so. First and foremost, if your own financial advisor acts as a fiduciary and is going to recommend that you execute your own succession planning, they should certainly have already executed or already be in the process of executing their own plan.
There is a great deal of downside to working with an advisor who does not have a firm succession plan in place; especially a sole practitioner. A prime example includes the possibility that you could be stuck searching for a new financial advisor at an inopportune time if your advisor were to retire, or worse, get hit by the proverbial bus. In addition, just because your advisor is part of a larger firm it does not mean that they have a succession plan in place. It is very important that you handle this proactively, as this is not a matter you want to leave to chance. You want to make sure that your advisor will be able to facilitate continuity for their clients should they retire or pass away.
How can you ensure you don’t end up without a financial advisor at a critical stage of your financial life? The best place to start is by asking your advisor what plans they have made to maintain client care after their retirement. Although this is a topic that your advisor should have already covered on their end, there are many financial advisors that have never addressed this issue. It is very important that you initiate this conversation if it has not yet taken place. You want to make sure that your advisor has executed a succession plan that touches upon all fronts like asset management and servicing continuity and leaves nothing to the imagination.
If your advisor currently has no plan in place, it may be time to start looking for a financial advisor that has already executed a sufficient succession plan. Never assume that every advisor has a plan. Here at Mitlin Financial,Inc., we already have an in-depth succession plan that’ll ensure seamless continuity for our clients with regards to asset management and client service. If you are unsure if your current financial advisor has a succession plan in place or if you’d like to hear more about the Mitlin philosophy, be sure to give us a call at (631) 952-4466 x12. To learn more about the importance of advisor succession planning, check out the latest Mitlin Minute. You’ve worked hard to get your finances to where they are, do take the risk of reversing all of that progress by leaving your financial future to the imagination.
Disclaimer: This article represents the opinion of Mitlin Financial Inc. It should not be construed as providing investment, legal and/or tax advice.