Most of our clients who have accumulated the critical mass they had hoped for have also learned that the investment of the assets is only one element of the entire portrait of this third and final financial act. More than just a portfolio manager, our clients are looking for a conductor to synchronize all of the elements of their financial life including the lawyers, accountants, insurance experts, bankers, and portfolio managers that came with it. Many of these professionals have barriers that prevent them from taking the lead and depend on the clients for the synchronization.

Miller McCurry is now the conductor for a small group of high-net-worth families, orchestrating multiple generations and multiple professionals.

Multi-Generational Planning

As we enter the third act, our parents are becoming more dependent on us financially and/or physically or they are healthy and financially secure and cannot figure out how to plan the distribution of their estate. At the same time our children are starting families, careers, and buying homes. Unfortunately, many families are faced with children having special needs. Sandwiched between is the planning for your “retirement” years. In general, all financial coordination is about spending your estate while you are alive (cash flow planning) or leaving it to family or charity at your death (estate planning). Think of all the variables you must address: social security, retirement plan distributions, health insurance, income tax, portfolio construction, life and long-term care insurance, wills and trusts, charity, and business dispositions. We are here to help!

Portfolio Optimization

The investment portfolio is at the heart of the plan since it is the primary cash flow generator and is the largest source of financial legacy. Our clients would like to see their portfolio provide cash flow, but grow enough to replace what they have withdrawn, leaving the “principal” in place for their heirs. Despite what Wall Street and hedge fund managers promote, there is no secret sauce! You can bet on the hare, but 2,000+ years ago Aesop told us the tortoise will win. No stock picker can consistently beat the market, however, good pickers can reduce volatility and still stay close to market performance. Cost matters. The average investor finally has the opportunity to invest at a cost structure formerly only available to large institutions.

Risk Mitigation

The most important element in multi-generational, interdisciplinary, financial coordination is the planning for risk. Some risks are foreseeable and can be planned for, such as the volatility of the markets that hold our assets. Other risks we can identify but cannot control, such as death or the need for care at older ages. And some risks are simply a roll of the dice every day that we awake. Those risks that we can see and measure can be dealt with simply, although many choose to ignore them. Many of the risks that we can identify but not control can be mitigated through insurance or through legal asset restructuring. Unpredictable, low probability events cannot be easily mitigated, but it does not mean that they should be entirely ignored.