Simply… the reporting of tax implications of your financial events and decisions.
Although the facts being reported via returns can be interpreted and presented differently, they cannot be changed. Tax Preparation is at its most effectiveness – that is, providing the best outcome for clients – when combined with Tax Planning. This added layer of expertise, offered by Dedicated Financial Services, seeks to legally and astutely guide financial decisions in order to change the resulting tax consequences in the following year.
Our approach focuses on the implementation of well-defined, specific objectives for the allocation of your assets. These, what we call “Dispositions For Your Money,” are a must. The primary Dispositions, and the ways they’ll be used, include the following:
As a result of using our Disposition-focused approach, rather than relying on the hope that simple asset allocation and diversification will result in sufficient growth, our clients have greater confidence that they, and those they care about, will benefit from their wealth in the most meaningful way. In so doing, they are Bringing Money to Life™.
Good Retirement Planning requires a portfolio to be integrated with income sources that provide a solution resembling a paycheck, like those earned during working years, while having the flexibility to meet needs as they arise. This objective is always at the forefront of this fundamental and highly beneficial DFS support service.
Retirement is the stage of life when you should enjoy complete discretionary time, free to do or not do whatever you please. For this lifestyle to be possible, you must not have a financial need to work, but should instead rely on income sources such as Social Security, Pensions, and Annuities to meet regular expenses. Of course, if these sources are insufficient, as they too often are, your portfolio of assets must be structured in a way that helps support shortfalls while being available to cover less frequent expenses, whether anticipated or not.
Since we realize that income needs will likely increase due to inflation, the desire to benefit loved ones, and a myriad of life and health changes, our approach often includes allocating a portfolio’s portion (not needed for the reasonable foreseeable future) into growth strategies that are consistent with the client’s risk tolerance and withdrawal time horizon. DFS guides and supports its clients through this vital planning process.
Overall, our objective is to assure that the client’s assets get to their intended recipients with minimal delay and, minimal, if any, Federal and/or State inheritance or estate taxes. Though DFS does not offer legal advice, we help enable a path to successfully reaching this objective by coordinating investment and tax components of an estate plan with the advice and service that attorneys provide.
In addition to the three ways clients can support the objective: having ownership of deeded assets properly structured, keeping accurate and up-to-date beneficiaries on financial accounts, and providing a current will to their estate’s executor, DFS can help plan the use of trusts to avoid potential delays and expenses of probate , as well as provide planning that may be beneficial in reducing estate taxes.
This service provides help in preparing you for the time when there is no longer a paycheck from an employer or a business (aka “Retirement”). Of course, everyone has their own financial situation which will include more or less assets, a high or low Social Security benefit, and possibly a pension.
Regardless as to whether the income sources are payments from the government, from previous employers, or from personally structured financial products (which may or may not be guaranteed), they may need to be supplemented with invested assets referred to as a portfolio.
There are many ways an income solution can be structured. It may include guaranteed income products such as annuities, income-producing assets such as CDs, bonds or stocks, and cash from liquidated assets which may have appreciated in value. The most important thing to remember is that the income plan must be specific, and not merely hypothetical. And, it must account for the various contingencies in life, including folks living considerably longer than the average life expectancy, and possibly not in good health.
For this fee-based service, DFS manages client portfolios for those who recognize the value of having expert professionals making financial decisions on their behalf, knowing that it’s provided within the guidelines of a defined fiduciary standard which describes the legal responsibility of DFS and its managers to do so in the client’s best interest. This can be described as a “win-win situation” where all parties have the same objective – to have portfolios grow as much as possible, given the amount of risk the client is willing to take.
Of course, clients should understand that investment professionals do not know the future of market performances, and that short-term is a poor indicator of long-term effectiveness. Thus, portfolios comprised of securities can and do experience losses.
DFS works towards fulfilling its fiduciary obligation by disclosing all risks, fees, and potential conflicts of interest, and by keeping in close communication with clients about both performance and reasonable expectations of the portfolios entrusted to its care.
This embodies strategies created to help neutralize the effects of events that may be catastrophic to your financial situation. Such events include financial losses incurred as a result of others’ misdeeds, negligence resulting in you getting sued, health issues suffered by you or your dependents, the passing of an income-provider, and severe investment losses. Of course, many times, the actual events cannot be prevented, but in virtually all instances the negative consequences can be significantly reduced or eliminated. Some strategies employed to accomplish asset protection are the procurement of insurances specific to the risks being covered, the transference of asset ownership to trusts, and proper diversification within investment portfolios.
DFS handles a wide array of insurance products such as life, disability, long-term care, and property and casualty, and also manages portfolios with regards to the client’s risk tolerances and the timelines for withdrawals from portfolios. Additionally, we collaborate with attorneys to create legal strategies to protect assets by retitling them to specially designed trusts.
Simply put, unless each potential risk, which has a reasonable possibility of occurring, is covered, asset protection may be limited to hopes, prayers, or wishes.
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