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What to Do With an Inheritance

When a loved one dies, it’s already an emotional time, and receiving an unexpected windfall only complicates things. An inheritance can completely change your lifestyle or at least bolster your financial outlook, but only if you make sound decisions. The most important thing to keep in mind when dealing with an inheritance is to create a plan for its use. Because of the emotional circumstances surrounding your inheritance, it may be best to wait before making any decisions so you have time to process your thoughts and develop a coherent plan.

Dealing With Identity Theft

About 7 percent of Americans over the age of 16 are victims of identity theft every year. There is a strong possibility that, at some point, your identity will be stolen. While everyone hopes it will never happen to them, it’s always best to be prepared. Here are the essential steps to take if your identity is stolen.

1. Alert the Bank
Alert the company that is associated with the compromised information. Notify them of the situation and ask to freeze any affected accounts. Be sure to change all log in information and PIN numbers to ensure security.

Investing in Art

Stocks, bonds, cash and other accounts are common places for individuals to allocate their investments. However, art can also be a viable investment option.

In 2013 alone, people from all over the world spent about $63 billion on art. Of those who bought art, 75 percent at least partially viewed the art as an investment opportunity. If you are considering investing in art, be sure you are aware of the factors that may influence your decision.

Collecting vs. Investing

Collecting is typically for show or display while pursuing a passion. With this, you buy what you personally like and don’t necessarily focus on the price tag. However, investing in art has a much different approach. Investors may not have a personal or emotional attachment to a piece. Instead, they will see the potential to make a profit.
What to Know Before You Buy

Every Last Drop:
Making the Most Out of Wine

History was made in July 2011 when a London company sold a bottle of 1811 Chateau d’Yquem for the hefty price of $117,000, making it the most valuable white wine ever sold. Two years later and halfway around the world, visitors to the Dubai International Airport could likely charter a private jet for less than it cost to indulge in the airport’s finest drink. The Le Clos wine shop, located in Terminal 3, offers the most expensive retail bottle of wine on the market today. Each bottle of this 2009 Bordeaux from Chateau Margaux is one of just six ever made and boasts a nearly $200,000 price tag.

While these examples are exorbitant, the lengths that enthusiasts go to for good wine prove that, depending on the bottle, it can be more than just a drink and even more than a passion; wine may be a financial asset. And just as with any other asset, there are unique ways you can leverage your wine collection’s value as well as certain measures you should take to protect it. Learn more about wine as an investment,

Teaching Kids About Money

As a parent, it’s your responsibility to teach your children about the world, including how to manage money. Financial literacy is one of the most important lessons you can impart on your children to make them successful in adulthood. Raise fiscally responsible children by teaching them the right lessons for their developmental level. Teach them the basics from a young age, and build on them as your children grow up.

Young Children (2-7 years old) begin teaching your child about money. Some experts suggest beginning as soon as a child shows an interest in money or store. You and your child should work through these educational goals during this period in the following ways:

Digital Estate Planning

When you think of your estate plan and what’s important for you to protect after your death, it’s likely that your immediate worries center on your assets with the highest financial or sentimental value—your bank, investment and retirement accounts, home, precious jewelry, family heirlooms and expensive cars or boats. It’s important to protect these things, as they can provide significant financial assistance to your family or to charitable organizations. However, in today’s digital age, focusing only on your largest valuables may cause you to overlook things that you likely use every day, yet never think of in terms of estate planning—your digital assets.

Business Succession Options

A succession plan for your business is one of the most important safeguards you can use to ensure the company’s future success. Approximately one-third of family businesses that transfer to the next generation result in success, and only 12 percent make it to the third generation. Choosing tomorrow’s leaders and formulating a plan for your retirement, death, divorce or even disability are tasks that should be done early and tweaked often. The transfer of power and wealth can provide a smooth transition or can be the demise of a company, depending on how future leaders are chosen and groomed, and how tax and estate planning implications are handled.

There are various business succession options available to the owners of privately held businesses. These include:

Estate Planning After a Divorce

During a divorce, the immediate problems of property division and child custody overshadow any long-term planning. Trying to figure out which documents need to change and which need to be thrown out is time-consuming, yet essential to keeping your future secure.

The legal end of a marriage often sparks disagreements over power of attorney or property distribution. Many people assume that legal powers granted to a spouse end at the start of a divorce; however, they actually last until…

Charitable Trusts and Annuities

Charitable Trusts and Annuities
Discover how to maximize your giving by using charitable giving methods that allow you to grow your donation through investment.

Contributing part of your estate to charity may be something that you and your family strongly believe in, whether or not you receive any benefit from it. Although generosity is the driving force behind philanthropy, there are also many benefits that a donor can reap from making charitable contributions. Philanthropy is an important aspect of generational wealth transfer

Best Practices of
Generational Wealth Transfer

There are many facets to consider when planning your family’s wealth transfer. These 10 best practices will help you stay focused on how to execute the most efficient transfer possible.

Think of monetary wealth as part of a larger picture. Although monetary wealth is important for your family’s security, it’s important to consider monetary assets as part of a larger family legacy. A successful transfer of wealth should also include family values, stories and traditions. Wealth transfer means not only uniting your family behind your…