How to make wealth management expertise pay off for you.

For a year we have written articles on wealth management. Our goal is to provide powerful real life scenarios with actual issues and challenges. Some stories were of financial disasters and others were of financial successes. Either way, we want you to learn from what others have experienced.

So we can continue to offer the most pertinent and timely wealth management information, we ask that you e-mail us stories or questions you would like us to tackle.

In answering your questions or proposing solutions to the challenges you face, we bring to bear our knowledge and experience as well as that of nationally renowned attorneys, CPAs or whatever professional resources we need to resolve the challenges satisfactorily.

After all, that is precisely what our job is as wealth managers. Bringing the right resources together to achieve a stated vision is what we do best.

Some of the professionals we use charge more than $600 per hour and we can provide their expertise through our articles.

We understand that every situation is unique, but there are common themes in wealth management challenges. We also know that the amount of wealth involved affects how we solve a problem. For example, solutions to a $100 million estate are likely to be much more elaborate than those for a $23 million estate, or an $8 million estate.

Of course we change the names and other aspects of the actual story to protect people’s privacy.

Any wealth management question is appropriate.

As a thank you to those who provide us the most thought-provoking stories or questions, we will send you your choice of a copy of our book, “Beyond Wealth: Finding the Balance Between Wealth and Happiness,” or our whitepaper, “Exiting Strategies: The CEO’s Seven Critical Steps to Cashing Out of a Business, Managing and Preserving Wealth.”

Here is a list of the topics we have covered and a quick summary of each. If you don’t have a copy of that date’s paper or can’t find it online, you are welcome to e-mail us and we’ll be happy to forward it to you via e-mail.

What millionaires have to say about estate taxes – Nov. 11, 2005

  • A discussion of research on more than 500 multimillionaires and their views of estate taxes. A copy of the research paper was offered via e-mail.

Exit strategy means more than just cashing in. – Dec. 10, 2005

  • A discussion of the disconnect between CEOs and entrepreneurs.

What every affluent investor must know about money management
– Jan. 13, 2006

  • Active vs. passive money management.
  • Your odds of financial freedom.

What families worth $8 million must do to prepare for the 45 percent tax
– Feb. 10, 2006

  • Wealthy Americans face major taxes upon death.
  • Don’t expect Congress to undermine tax revenues.
  • A living trust isn’t enough.

Protect your IRA or retirement plan from taxes – March 10, 2006

  • Taxes could take 68 percent of your large IRAs and retirement plans.
  • Uncle Sam is the biggest beneficiary of many large IRAs.
  • Advanced estate and tax-planning strategies are available.

Hedge funds: are the huge profits real or an illusion? – April 14, 2006

  • Hedge fund K-1s may be misleading.
  • Taxes, management and incentive fees can erode 60 percent of your hedge fund income.
  • Accredited and affluent investors must know the solutions to the pitfalls of hedge funds.

Diversification events: Concentrated stock, selling real estate and inheritance
– May 12, 2006

  • Create a substantial liquidity event with 100 percent downside protection, tax deferral and appreciation on your concentrated stock.
  • Coordinating strategies among your professional advisers.
  • If you think capital gain taxes are bad, just wait to see what estate taxes do.

Where financial advice falls short and leaves you short – June 9, 2006

  • Your financial security may be based on faulty planning.
  • Modern wealth planning can stress-test thousands of scenarios.
  • Your adviser’s main objective should be your financial security.

Christopher G. Snyder and Haitham “Hutch” E. Ashoo are principals of Pillar Financial Services in Walnut Creek. Contact them at 925-356-6780.

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