Telling Your Story: How to Write a Professional Biography

Posted by Patricia Deschineau

June 12, 2019 at 1:30 PM

Whether prospective clients are referred to you or are conducting their own search for financial advisors in their area, the first place they’ll go to learn more about your firm is your website. And where’s the first place they’ll look on your website to learn more about you? Your biography! So, what does that mean for you? Without a shred of a doubt, you need an informative, well-crafted, engaging bio that wins over prospects and motivates them to explore the rest of your website—and, ultimately, get in touch with you.

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Topics: Marketing

CMO Insights: When to Hire Third-Party Marketing Support

Posted by Sarah Howes

June 11, 2019 at 10:00 AM

Brian Sullivan is Commonwealth’s newly minted senior vice president, chief marketing officer, and he brings with him experience from a variety of industries, including academia (Northeastern University), sports (the Boston Red Sox), and consumer brands (Oreos, Bagel Bites). If given a moment, he’ll tell you that great marketing is all about storytelling and experience, and he’s worked with all types of marketing talent to create memorable and effective messaging. In some cases, that talent has included third-party marketing support firms, a resource that many advisors need at one point or another. So, I decided to sit down with him to talk through what’s involved when assessing the need for third-party marketing support and how to evaluate the best fit for any firm.

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Topics: Marketing

A Spotlight on State Estate Taxes: Strategies to Avoid Exposure

Posted by David Haughton, JD

June 5, 2019 at 1:30 PM

In 2017, following the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), a dramatic step was taken to double the federal estate tax exemption amount. Today, individual estates valued at less than $11.4 million are not subject to taxation at a federal level. This new threshold means only a small fraction of estates will be subject to the federal estate tax upon death for the foreseeable future.

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Topics: Estate Planning

Does Your Client Still Need an ILIT?

Posted by Krista Teegarden

June 4, 2019 at 10:00 AM

Under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, the federal estate tax exemption increased from $5.49 million to $11.4 million per individual (in 2019). This boost means a married couple can exclude a staggering $22.8 million from estate tax!

But this dramatic change has also prompted many clients to question whether they still need an irrevocable life insurance trust (ILIT) if their estate is valued below this exemption. The answer is . . . it depends.

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Topics: Estate Planning

What Type of Fiduciary Service Provider Are You?

Posted by Mathew Powers, CFA, AIF

May 29, 2019 at 1:30 PM

Administering a retirement plan and managing its assets involve specific responsibilities that can be difficult for most employers to perform. They first need to understand the rules and regulations of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). This is complicated enough, and oftentimes it will require a fiduciary service provider to help the employer understand everything involved. ERISA sets standards of conduct for those who manage an employee benefit plan and its assets (i.e., fiduciaries). A plan must have at least one named plan fiduciary. For some plans, the plan fiduciary may be an administrative committee or a company’s board of directors. The key to determining whether an individual or an entity is a fiduciary is whether it is exercising discretion or control over the plan.

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Topics: Retirement Consulting

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