Who’s on Your Team?

Team?  Do you really have a team?  Think about it – you certainly do.  In fact, you probably have several teams – medical, financial/legal, family, friends, etc.  In this blog, I am going to address the importance of your financial/legal team. 

In years gone by, we would go to a doctor who would treat us for everything – almost.  Today, we may have a primary doctor, but if there is a specific issue, we get referred to a specialist.  Your primary and the specialist now become a medical team for you. 

Likewise, in the legal profession, many practitioners are focused on specific areas that complement one another, rather than being a general practitioner.  The benefit to specializing is that their services are focused on the matter at hand and they have more expertise in this practice area. 

In our world today, we are all aware of tax law changes and how frequently they occur.  It is wise to utilize the services of a lawyer who specializes in estates, trusts and taxes. Such lawyers must keep up with these changes and, by doing so, are better versed in how to help you plan to meet your specific situations, needs and wants. 

Regardless of the amount of wealth you have accumulated, it is good to have a financial advisor; not a customer service representative in your local bank branch.  A financial advisor is there to provide financial advice on how to preserve your acquired wealth and how to meet your goals – growth, income, or both.  They follow the economy and the securities markets and can strategize how to get the most bang for your hard-earned buck.  Their focus is on money.

Another member of your team might be an accountant or tax preparer.  This member focuses on finance, but differently than the financial advisor. They will try their best to help with the minimization of tax liability. 

So, you probably have a financial/legal team already and just didn’t realize it.  You may see each of them separately, but imagine how effective they might be if they worked together for your benefit.  The team approach has proven to be very beneficial to clients because of the interaction and collaboration of ideas and strategies.  Speaking with each of your team members separately may not enable them to provide services to their potential.  One of them may know about a specific detail in your life and the others aren’t aware of this.  However, this one detail could have an overall impact. 

Introduce your team and allow them to work together on your behalf.  You might be surprised at the beneficial outcome. 

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About the Author

Kay Sowa is a paralegal in the Trusts and Estates Group at Capehart & Scatchard, P.A. She is an IRS Enrolled Agent, an Accredited Estate Planner®, and a Certified Trust and Fiduciary Advisor. She oversees the trust and estate administration practice for the firm. She is an accomplished author and lecturer who has frequently spoken on behalf of a number of organizations including the National Business Institute and the Institute of Paralegal Education.

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