Planning for
All Stages
of Life.

Because we all need a little direction at some point in our life. 

From our earliest years, we have been provided invaluable guidance by our parents, teachers, doctors and numerous other individuals and professionals whom we trust with our most personal matters and decisions. These most valuable Life Advisors possess a ­common ­characteristic - they want what's 'best for us'.

At Valley Forge Financial Dynamics, understanding our clients' goals and objectives is what we use to point us in the proper planning direction for each and every client. From the start of the planning phase to the final implementation phase, maintaining what is in the best interest of our client is first and foremost.

As a Wealth Optimization and Wealth Utilization firm focused on the creation, growth, longevity and eventual desired transfer of wealth, our team of ­seasoned ­Professional ­Advisors, with well over a century of combined experience, is prepared to point you in the right direction.

Life insurance is one option for building up more financial security to protect family, loved ones, and a business before and after an individual’s death. However, only 60% of Americans have life insurance. And, nearly one in five policyholders do not feel sufficiently insured.

Term Life Insurance

Term life insurance often provides the lowest cost of life insurance coverage which is why it is most popular with the general public. Premiums remain guaranteed for a level period of time for a stated death benefit. The policyholder often has options to either renew coverage or convert the policy to -permanent coverage. In addition, business owners in a partnership often have a Buy-Sell Agreement in place to provide protection for the surviving partner(s) in the event that one of the partners dies. Typically, a Buy-Sell Agreement is funded through a Term Life Insurance policy.

Enhanced Benefit Term

Term Life with Accelerated Benefits allows the policy owner to access all or part of their death benefit while living if they experience a qualifying terminal, chronic, or critical illness. Since these benefits are generally unrestricted, once qualified, the policy owner can use the benefit for any reason.

Return of Premium Term

A Return-of-Premium Rider provides for a refund of the premiums paid on a term life insurance policy if the policyholder doesn't die during the stated term. This effectively reduces the policyholder's net cost to zero. A policy with a return of premium provision is also referred to as Return-of-Premium life insurance.

Indexed Universal Life

Indexed universal life (IUL) insurance allows the owner to allocate cash value amounts to either a fixed account or an equity index account. Policies offer a variety of well-known indexes, such as the Nasdaq-100 or the S&P 500.1 IUL insurance policies are more volatile than fixed ULs, but they are less risky than variable UL insurance policies, because no money is actually invested in equity positions.

IUL insurance policies offer tax-deferred cash accumulation for retirement while maintaining a death benefit. People who need permanent life insurance protection but wish to take advantage of possible cash accumulation via an equity index might use IULs as key person insurance for business owners, premium financing plans, or estate-planning vehicles.

Guaranteed Universal Life

Guaranteed Universal Life insurance takes the concept of universal life insurance but removes the market risk aspect of it. Your premiums stay the same regardless of how market indexes perform as your plan’s interest rates are baked into the premiums when you sign up for the policy. This type of life insurance has a “no-lapse” guarantee, meaning that as long as you pay your premiums, you’ll have coverage.

Variable Universal Life (VUL)

This a type of permanent life insurance policy with a savings component that allows for the investment of the cash value. Like standard universal life insurance, the premium is flexible. VUL insurance policies typically have both a maximum cap and minimum floor on the investment return associated with the savings component. VUL insurance has investment subaccounts that allow for the investment of the cash value. The function of the subaccounts is similar to a mutual fund. Exposure to market fluctuations can generate significant returns, but may also result in substantial losses.

Survivorship/Second to Die Life Insurance

Survivorship coverage is best applied when used for protecting the financial health of future generations. Usually, a survivorship life insurance policy is used to pay estate taxes, inheritance taxes, and to cover the financial needs of policyholders’ children or dependents. Benefits paid upon death of last of multiple insureds, generally resulting in lower premiums than UL policies. This is a possible solution for one member who is uninsurable.

Whole Life Insurance

Whole life insurance provides coverage for the life of the insured. In addition to paying a death benefit, whole life insurance also contains a savings component in which cash value may accumulate. These policies are also known as “permanent” or “traditional” life insurance. “Blue Chip” investment grade whole life plans can provide significant cash accumulation benefits and stable and secure cash growth. Numerous Dividend options such as Accumulations, Paid up Insurance & Extended Term Insurance are options incorporated into the contract.

High Early Cash Value Insurance (HECV)

Whole Life High Early Cash Value Life Insurance offers permanent life insurance protection with guaranteed cash values that are higher in early policy years than cash values of conventional whole life policies. This type of policy can help businesses that purchase life insurance reduce the impact on the company balance sheet during early policy years.

Single Premium Life Insurance

Single premium life insurance policies are specifically designed to be funded by one single premium payment. Attractive features and benefits of single premium life insurance include passing assets income tax free, and leveraging/transferring cash value in an existing plan and eliminating future premium payments. Almost any permanent life insurance plan policy can be funded with a single premium.

Final Expense Insurance

Final Expense is a “catch phrase” to describe low face permanent life plans; normally whole life or guaranteed universal life.  Many “Final Expense” plans can be acquired with minimal underwriting requirements, making them attractive to seniors as well as the writing agent.

Linked Benefit Insurance

This is life insurance coupled with long-term care combination products (often called hybrid or asset-based products) which fall into two main categories: linked-benefit products under and accelerated death-benefit riders. Benefits under 7702(b) are closer to true long-term care benefits and can be marketed as such, while accelerated death-benefit or chronic illness riders under 101(g) cannot be marketed as long-term care insurance, even though the benefits can be used for long-term care expenses.

Impaired Risk / Uninsurable

Prospective insured’s with significant/serious health issues may be considered an Impaired Risk, or wrongly deemed “Un-insurable”. Impaired risk underwriting involves “proactive” underwriting to find the life insurance carrier that specializes in covering that specific risk. Insurance companies we work with offer coverage for the following impairments: Type I & II Diabetics, Cancer Survivors, Heart Attack, Stroke, Organ Transplant and others.

Does an annuity make sense for your investment portfolio? At Valley Forge Financial Dynamics, we offer a full-range of annuity products to fit any client situation.

Fixed Indexed Annuities (FIA)

Fixed Index Annuities, also known as equity-indexed annuities base their annual interest rates on the performance of certain pre-determined indexes, such as the S&P 500. It’s a way to balance the risks and rewards, carrying lower risks than market investments and higher potential than traditional fixed annuities. The interest rate won’t sink below a preset amount. Any gains earned will be locked in and it will never lose its value. These annuities often have enhanced income riders attached which will pay a lifetime income based on values significantly higher than the invested amount.

Single Premium Immediate Annuities (SPIA)

With a Single Premium Immediate Annuity (SPIA) the annuity holder begins receiving payments within a year after purchasing it. The payments can be for a fixed period of time, or for the lifetime of the annuitant.

Multi-Year Guaranteed Annuities (MYGA)

This is the option with the least risk and the most predictability. Multi-Year Guaranteed Annuity (MYGA) sometimes referred to as fixed annuities, come with a guaranteed, set interest rate for a fixed number of years, that doesn’t vary beyond the terms of the contract. While other investments might soar or dive, the fixed annuity is steady. At the end of the predetermined number of years, the interest will reset, often at a lower rate.

Enhanced Income Fixed Index Annuities

Fixed Index Annuities that have a low-cost rider, typically under 1% that will provide enhanced lifetime income.  In many cases the enhanced value is twice to accumulated value of the annuity.  The income provided will not run out no matter value of the underlying annuity. The income rider can be single or joint and works with qualified and non-qualified accounts.

Accumulation Focused Annuities

These are fixed index annuities with a low cost rider that is designed to boost the indexes and fixed accounts for the annuity.  By doing this it increases the growth potential of the annuity at a rate that exceeds the cost of the rider.

Bonus Annuity

These are Fixed Index Annuities that have a 'Bonus' on the premium. In the case of a single premium annuity the bonus is on that first premium. With a flexible premium annuity the bonus is added all new premium placed within a set period of years, which are typically within the first 5 or 6 years. These annuities provide an initial boost to the growth of the annuity and can make up situations such as recent market losses.

Group Annuities

Annuities that can be utilized to fund group retirement plans, such as a 401(k). They are unregistered variable annuities that can be marketed without a securities license.

Annuities with LTC Hybrid Coverage

Annuities that perform as a normal annuity, either a fixed annuity or a Fixed Index Annuity. They may not have the same robust growth as other annuities, and they do not have any enhanced income features. They do have another component to them in that they provide traditional long term care protection.

Variable Annuities

These are annuities, that in addition to having a fixed interest option, will offer one or more mutual fund investment options for cash accumulation purposes. These types of annuities do not offer safety of principal and earnings, as they have full market participation. While they can promise greater returns than other types of annuities, they are exposed to full-market risk and can lose value, including loss of principal.

Considering long-term care costs are an important part of any long-range financial plan, especially in your 50s and beyond. Waiting until you need care to buy coverage is not an option. You won’t qualify for long-term care insurance if you already have a debilitating condition. Most people with long-term care insurance buy it in their mid-50s to mid-60s.


Yes, there two different types of Long-Term Care options:

Hybrid insurance combines long term care insurance with either life insurance or annuities. In the event that an individual does not use long-term care services, their beneficiaries will receive a death benefit or payment. Furthermore, hybrid insurance policies often offer a surrender value - which is a cash payment that is paid to the policy owner if the choose to cancel the policy. ­Typically, these policies are single payment premiums or flexible payment premiums for a certain number of years. What many people like about hybrid policies vs. traditional ones is the policy does three things instead of one, it provides a Life Insurance Policy, Long-Term Care ­Insurance, and Guaranteed Return of Premiums. Some hybrid policies also return a percentage of premiums paid if you cancel the policy before the end of the surrender charge period.

Traditional long term care insurance gives clients the flexibility to customize their policy to fit their needs. For example, they choose the exact amount of coverage they want. They also ­specify when they want their benefits to start and how long they'd like them to last. This makes ­traditional long-term care insurance generally one of the most efficient ways to get the most coverage for the amount of premium paid. Typically, an annual premium is paid for life, although the premium payment period could be shorter in some instances. Also, premiums are not guaranteed to stay the same and may rise after purchase. If a policy is canceled or never accessed for long term care services, typically an individual will not receive refunds of for any past premium or any cash value. Generally includes a Cost of Living increase provision.


  • Long-Term Care guarantees the return of premium either in the form of benefits or a death benefit
  • The death benefit is paid out of the policyholder's heirs, whether or not they end up needing Long Term Care coverage
  • The premium rates are fixed-cannot be raised in the future
  • Preferential tax treatment for repurposing an existing life insurance and annuity policy via 1035 exchanges


  • Nursing Home Care
  • Assisted Living Facilities
  • Adult Daycare Services
  • In-Home Care Services
  • Home Modification
  • Care Coordination


A person is deemed eligible to receive benefits from “qualified” LTC policies if a medical professional determines that the person cannot perform 2 of the 6 "Activities of Daily Living” (ADLs) without the assistance of another person, of if they have a moderate to severe cognitive impairment.

Here's a list of the 6 Activities of Daily Living:

  • Bathing/Showering
  • Basic Hygiene: brushing teeth, combing hair, etc.
  • Dressing
  • Toileting
  • Walking/Mobility
  • Feeding

 Common ailments that often contribute to a person qualifying for LTC benefits include: 

  • Diabetes
  • Macular Degeneration
  • Arthritis
  • Degenerative disk/spinal disorders
  • Stroke/CVT
  • Injury/Falls
  • Dementia/Alzheimer’s Disease
  • Motor-neuron deficiencies/disease
Tips to Consider:
  • Buy sooner rather than later
  • Work with an independent agent
  • Start with a budget
  • Plan realistically
  • Go for a simple policy

Are you prepared for the 'What-ifs' in life? If you became disabled and couldn't work, how would you pay your bills and protect your assets or loved ones? Just over 1-in-4 of today's 20 year-olds will become disabled before they retire.

High Limit Disability Insurance

It can be hard to face the fact that a disability can happen at anytime to anyone. Clients without high limit disability insurance could potentially face huge financial losses. Your clients need to protect themselves and their families from the ruinous fiscal consequences of a debilitating injury or illness. High wage earners whose income consists of significant 'Bonuses', can purchase limits up to $100,000/month.

Guaranteed Issue Multi-Life Disability Insurance

If a disability inhibits one from working the financial strain can be catastrophic. Because many highly compensated employees have difficulty obtaining adequate and reasonable amounts of disability insurance through their group long term disability insurance plans, USI has high limit supplemental group plans to consider.

Buy-Sell Disability Insurance

While most people plan for an unexpected death, many overlook the possibility of an injury or sickness permanently disabling one of the partners; even though a disability is much more likely! Buy-Sell Disability Insurance is invaluable in this type of situation.

Loan Indemnification Disability Insurance

Often times, when a bank lends money to a business, they will require the borrowers to provide disability insurance covering the payments. This insures the bank that, should the borrower become sick or hurt, the payments will still be made. The preferred solution would be to prescribe disability insurance that would pay the monthly loan payments and/or pay off the remainder of the loan balance.


Did you know?

  • Disability insurance replaces 60%-80% of your income for a set period of time if you're unable to work.

  • Illness, injury or other conditions that prevent you from being able to do your regular job could qualify as a disability.
  • Disability insurance from employers does not offer much coverage because they're short-term plans and do not apply if you leave that employer.
  • The benefit payment from an individual policy is tax-free, but benefits from an employer plan may be taxed.

Should you get Disability Insurance?

  • According to 2017 data from the Social Security Administration, a 20 year old worker has a 1-in-4 chance of becoming disabled, for at least 1 year, by the time they reach retirement age.
  • Because of how difficult it is to qualify for Social Security Disability, it is recommended that everyone should consider Disability Insurance.
  • People with a higher standard of living would be greatly impacted if they lost income for just a few months.
  • Married couples and families typically rely on two incomes to pay all of their bills each month, so losing one could cause issues.
  • If you have significant debt, whether that's from a mortgage, an auto loan, or student loan debt from getting an advanced degree.

Are there different types?

Yes, there are different types of disability insurance:

  • Short-Term Disability - Will pay up to 80% of your gross monthly income, but lasts just six months, this is normally though an employer.
  • Long-Term Disability - Will pay 60% of your gross monthly income, and payments may last for two years or until you retire.
  • Social Security Disability - This is a free form of disability insurance from the government and will only cover individuals with a severe disability. Notoriously difficult to qualify for and most are better off with Short Term Disability or Long Term Disability.
  • Private Disability Insurance - Is often overlooked but it can fill the coverage gaps left open by health insurance plans and life insurance policies.

Chances are you know someone who has faced a diagnosis covered by critical illness insurance: common conditions such as a heart attack, cancer or stroke. Recovering can take a toll on one's well-being and on their finances.

  • A Critical Illness Policy pays the insured a lump sum following the diagnosis of an illness covered under the plan. Critical-illness plans often cover diseases like cancer, organ transplant, heart attack, stroke, renal failure, and paralysis, among others.
  • Critical Illness and Accident Plans are unique solutions available on an individual or group chassis.
  • Critical Illness Plans are a great complement to Disability Insurance coverage. The benefits pay a lump sum for a number of different illnesses. This coverage can help individuals pay for medical treatments and can make it possible for individuals to enjoy their last days, not having to worry about financial obligations when a critical illness strikes.
  • Accident Plans are a perfect and affordable solution for clients that may be medically uninsurable for Disability or Critical Illness coverage. This insures that they have some benefits for accidents that occur.

Financial planning is a step-by-step approach to achieving one's long-term goals, and acts as a roadmap to guide you through life's journey. Essentially, it helps you be in control of your income, expenses, and investments, allowing you to manage your money and achieve your goals.


Setting Goals

  • Budgeting
  • Emergency fund
  • Insurance
  • Using credit
  • Investing
  • Tax planning
  • Saving for college
  • Retirement planning
  • Estate planning

Income Sources

  • Paycheck
  • Rental income
  • Government benefits
  • Interest
  • Investment income


  • Fixed expenses 
  • Discretionary expenses

Risk Management with Insurance

Common types of insurance  that help protect you and your assets from different risks: 

  • Health insurance
  • Auto insurance
  • Life insurance
  • Property insurance
  • Liability insurance
  • Disability insurance
  • Long-term care insurance

Growth, Income and Stability

  • Growth: Increase in market value
  • Income: Payments of interest or dividends
  • Stability: Protection of original investment

Start Now

  • Don’t put off planning and investing for retirement
  • The sooner you start, the longer your investments have to grow
  • Playing “catch-up” later can be difficult and expensive

"The question isn't at what age I want to retire, it's at what income?"

- George Foreman

Retirement planning is ideally a lifelong process. You can start at any time, but it works best if you begin sooner than later. That’s the best way to insure a safe, secure, and enjoyable retirement. Retirement planning includes identifying sources of income, evaluating expenses, implementing a savings program, and managing both assets and risk. Future cash flows are estimated to gauge whether the retirement income goal will be achieved.

Retirement Planning Strategies should include the following: 

  • Social Security Maximization and Medicare planning
  • Required Minimum Distribution strategies for “Qualified” assets (401k’, 403b’s, SEP’s, etc.)
  • Pension Maximization: maximize annuity distribution & offset spousal considerations
  • Estate Planning
  • Legacy Planning

Three Keys to Funding a Comfortable Retirement 

  • Determine Your Needs
  • Develop an Investment  Strategy
  • Protect Your Nest Egg

 Factors That Influence Your Retirement Income Needs 

  • Retirement  age
  • Length  of retirement
  • Health-care  needs
  • Inflation
  • Lifestyle

 Length of Retirement*

  • At age 65, a healthy individual may expect to spend 20 years or longer in retirement.
  • Males Chance of living to Age 85 = 63%, Age 90 = 43%
  • Females chances of living to Age 85 = 72%. Age 90 = 53%
  • You may need anywhere from 70% to 100% of your pre-retirement  income to live comfortably in retirement.

      *Source:  Society of Actuaries, 2020

Taxable investment vs Tax-Deferred Investment:

An initial $10,000 investment with a 6% annual rate of return applying a 24% tax rate over 30 year will grow 

  • Tax deferred = $57,435
  • Taxed annually = $38,104

 Why Your Time Horizon and Risk Tolerance Matter 

  • Stocks = 10.22% average annual return (expect long-term significant growth, but also significant short-term losses)
  • Corporate bonds = 6.58% average annual return (less chance of loss, but with less growth than stocks over time
  • T-Bills = 2.24% average annual return (low returns, little to no risk)

     *reflects the past 25 years

Start Saving Now

$3,000 annual investment with a 6% annual rate of return and Reinvestment of earnings

  • Beginning at age 20 = $679,500
  • Beginning at age 35 = $254,400
  • Beginning at age 45 = $120,000

        (Taxes not considered)

One of the most common mistakes individuals and couples make regarding Social Security is when they choose to start receiving benefits. Maximizing this benefit will go a long way in determining if you will enjoy an adequate and happy retirement.

When Should You Start Receiving Retirement Benefits? 

  • Before your full retirement age?  As early as age 62
  • At your full retirement age? Age 66-67
  • After your full retirement age?  As late as age 70

 Why is it an Important Decision? 

  • When you claim benefits can significantly affect your overall retirement income
  • If you’re married, timing can also affect spousal/survivor income

 What Should You Consider? 

  • Your full retirement age and benefit calculation
  • Amount of your future benefit and effect of early or delayed retirement
  • How long you expect retirement to last based on life expectancy
  • Whether you plan to continue working
  • Other sources of retirement income
  • Income taxes
  • How your spouse might be affected

How Is Your Benefit Calculated?

As you approach retirement age, your highest 35 years of earnings are indexed, then averaged, and a formula is applied  to determine your benefit at full retirement age.

How Much You’ll Receive:

Claiming Benefits Earlier 

  • Can start benefits as early as age 62
  • Benefit reduction —you’ll receive 25% to 30% less at 62 than at full retirement age
  • Benefits received for a longer period of time

 Claiming Benefits Later 

  • You receive delayed retirement credits, up until age 70
  • Benefit is increased 8% for each year you postpone receiving benefits past full retirement age

Monthly Benefit Comparison: 

  • Benefit at age 70 is 77% more than benefit at age 62
  • But cumulative benefits from age 62 to 70 equal $134,400


Age 62
Age 63
Age 64
Age 65
Age 66
Age 67
Age 68
Age 69
Age 70

How Working Can Affect Your Benefits:

Before Full Retirement Age

  • $1 withheld for every $2 that earnings exceed annual limit of $18,960 in 2021

Year You Reach Full Retirement Age

  • $1 withheld for every $3 that earnings exceed annual limit of  $50,520 in 2021

At or After Full Retirement Age

  • Earnings will not affect your benefit

Taxation and Your Social Security Retirement Benefits:

Will Your Benefit Be Taxable?*

Up to 50% of your benefit may be taxable if your combined income* is:

  • $25,000 to $34,000 and you file as single
  • $32,000 to $44,000 and you file as married filing jointly

 Up to 85% of benefit may be taxable if your combined income* is: 

  • Over $34,000 and you file as single
  • Over $44,000 and you file as married filing jointly

*combined income = adjusted  gross income + nontaxable income + ½ of Social Security benefit

How Your Decision Affects Your Spouse and What is the Appropriate Combination of Claiming Ages:

  • Retirement benefits are based on your earnings record —at full retirement age you’re entitled to receive 100% of your full retirement benefit
  • Spousal benefits are based on your earnings record —as much as 50% of your full retirement benefit if your spouse claims at his or her full retirement age
  • Reduction for filing for spousal benefits early - spouse can’t file until retired worker files

 Survivor Benefits:

  • Surviving spouse generally receives the greater of the retirement benefit  the worker was receiving or his or her own benefit
  • Survivor benefits may be payable as early as age 60 (may be subject to reduction)

The Power of Delaying Your Benefits:

Monthly Benefit Example

Age 62Age 67Age 70
Spouse 1
Spouse 2
Total Joint
Monthly Income
  • Monthly joint income is $2,374 more if both spouses claim benefits at age 70 instead of at age 62
  • Monthly survivor benefit for Spouse 2 also increases

In today’s college climate, you must have a real, clear strategy in place for funding college. The cost of tuition, fees, room and board rise dramatically year after year. You need a financial professional who understands the specific financial challenges and can help you meet them.

Saving for College? How Are You Going to Pay? 

  • Gifts from Grandparents
  • Other Borrowing
  • Cost Reductions
  • Your college savings
  • Financial aid
  • Income in the college years

Setting a Savings Goal

Monthly Investment
5 Years
10 Years
15 Years

*Figures are based on a 6% average annual after-tax return.

College Savings Options

  • 529 plans*
  • Coverdell Education Savings Accounts*
  • Mutual funds, stocks, ETFs
  • Savings accounts
  • Money market funds
  • CDs
  • Roth IRAs*

*Tax-advantaged accounts

Which Options Are Right For You?

529 Plans*Coverdell ESA's*Roth IRA's*Mutual Funds
& Stocks
Open to All


High or No
Contribution Limits


For Investment


Tax Free EarningsXXXX

Not Included in
Financial Aid


*Restrictions and penalties may apply.

So many have a child or loved one with special needs. You want to make sure that they are protected and taken care of after you are gone.

Creating a plan for them can be extremely challenging. Proper Special Needs Planning will allow you to protect your loved one in a manner that fits for your family. An attorney who specializes in Estate Planning and Special Needs Trust can help create the documents you need to protect your loved one. An experienced Financial Professional can help you make sure that your goals and wishes are within reach financially.


When starting this type of planning you should be aware of certain considerations: 

  • Do not disinherit your loved one. A common thought is that you give a greater share of one’s estate or life insurance proceeds to the “healthy” child and disinheriting the other child. This can cause a strain on the family dynamic and is not necessary. The solution is to create a Special Needs Trust, through an attorney.  You can create a trust that is used for purely discretionary purposes, as well as a trust that can be used for maintaining the quality of life you desire for your loved one.

  • Choose the Trustee(s) carefully. Typically the trustee is given the sole and absolute discretion to act on behalf of the beneficiary (the special needs person).  This is a standard that is required for determining whether the beneficiary is eligible for benefits such as SSI or Medicaid. Whether it’s a family member or a professional, be sure to chose somebody with the capabilities to make these types of decisions.

  • Make sure the trust is properly funded. Consider using life insurance to fund the Special Needs Trust. You do not need to have cash built up inside the policy, but you need to make sure that the life insurance will be in place for your lifetime. In the event that there are 2 parents involved, consider a Second To Die Policy, which will pay a death benefit to the Trust upon the passing of the second insured. It is important that the life insurance policy is owned by the Trust.  Having the trust in place before the insurance is acquired is the best way to achieve this goal.

  • Do not plan on using IRA’s and other Retirement Plans to fund the Trust.  Typically these types of plans will have distribution requirements which could severely hinder the goals and desires of the plan.  Additionally, these types of accounts typically are market investments, which may lose value.

  • Coordinate your plan with others.  Make sure you tell your relatives, and certain friends about your plans. Often times, with the best of intentions people will leave an inheritance for a person with special needs as a way to help.  If this is done outside of the Trust, it can curtail not only the intentions of the trust, but also have a negative effect on the special needs person getting benefits they may need.

Keep these factors in mind as you consider how to best plan for the special needs person in your life.

A yearly review of your insurance policies gives you the opportunity to explore your coverage needs and what changes you might want to make.

Policy owners often overlook the vital need to review their policies. Though Term Life insurance does not require much attention, any permanent or cash value plan should be reviewed annually to ensure the plan is “sound” and at minimum meeting its base line expectations. Policies with loans, or poor performance can unexpectedly lapse, and or create an unexpected significant taxable event. So dust off that old policy and ask us for a review.

Other items to discuss when reviewing are:

Individual or Family Changes

  • Marriage or divorce
  • Purchase or sale of property
  • Birth or adoption of a child
  • Structure financial care for a special needs child
  • The care of a parent or parents
  • Beneficiary updates

Insureds change in health or aging: 

  • Change in health
  • A term policy that’s approaching the end of it’s guarantee period or it’s conversion period to a permanent policy
  • The need for more living benefits

Business & Career

  • Individual career change
  • Start-up your own business
  • Business debt
  • Business ownership change
  • Rewarding key personal
  • Loss of a key employee

Policy / Industry Specific Changes:

  • Policy performance based on interest rates
  • Policy loans / withdraws
  • Policy in trust not previously reviewed
  • Lapse protection / secondary guarantees
  • New lower mortality tables
  • Change in tax law

A Life Settlement is a financial transaction that enables qualified life insurance policy owners to receive a cash advance on their life insurance coverage by selling it to a state licensed financial institution called a life settlement provider.

The sale of an in-force life insurance policy is similar to the sale of a home or car - all rights, title, and beneficial interest in the life insurance policy are transferred to the buyer who then becomes responsible for all future premium payments. The price paid for the life insurance policy represents the net present value of the policy which is discounted from the face amount and calculated by considering the future premium expenses, health prognosis of the insured, as well as other risk factors.

Why Consider a Life Settlement Option?

If a life insurance policy is no longer needed, no longer wanted, or no longer affordable it might be a great time to sell. Your life insurance policy might be worth more than its cash surrender value. Don’t lapse or surrender your life insurance policy until you understand if it’s worth more.

Possible reasons for selling a life insurance policy:

  • Life insurance premiums are no longer affordable
  • The need to replace lost income in case of death of the insured no longer exists
  • The need for funds to pay estate taxes no longer applies
  • There is a need for resources to pay for health expenses and long term care
  • A term policy may be reaching the end of the coverage period
  • Funds are wanted to improve a retirement lifestyle

Life Insurance Policy Considerations

  • The life insurance policy must have a face value of $100,000 or more.
  • The life insurance policy must be transferable.
  • All types of life insurance policies MAY qualify if the sale is allowed by the life insurance carrier's original contract (contract language for group policies must be reviewed).
  • Non-convertible term life insurance policies can be sold under limited circumstances, qualification will depend on the insured's life expectancy vs. the remaining premium schedule. If the premium schedule shows significant annual increases, the insured would likely need to be diagnosed with a terminal condition.

Health Status of the Insured

  • The insured must have health conditions that limit life expectancy to under 20 years.
  • If the insured is under age 65, life threatening health conditions or a terminal diagnosis would be required.
  • If the insured is age 65-74, serious health impairments would be needed in order to qualify.
  • If the insured is age 75-79, chronic health conditions would likely be needed in order to qualify.
  • If the insured is age 80+, qualification is likely but would depend on the future premium costs of the policy.

Are Life Settlement Proceeds Taxable?

  • Proceeds of the sale of your life insurance policy may be taxable under federal and/or state income tax law
  • The sale may affect your right to receive Medicaid or other government benefits
  • Proceeds could be subject to claims and creditors

Eligibility Requirements

The eligibility requirements for a viatical settlement or life settlement are based on two criteria:

  • The Life Insurance Policy
  • The Insured's Life Expectancy

It's not now much money you make, but how much money you keep, how hard it works for you, and how many generations you keep it for.

- Robert T. Kiyosaki 

For those who have successfully accumulated assets, in any form, proper planning provides the peace of mind that no matter what the future holds, their financial world is in order, and those that they have sacrificed for, and love, will receive the “fruits” of their lifetime efforts.

The primary reasons for initiating a formal Estate Plan are:

  • Assuring that an Individual’s lifetime efforts are distributed according to their wishes when they pass
  • Without proper planning and establishing and updating vital documents the result will be Intestacy which is defined as dying without a Will
  • The result of this lack of planning, unless the property is jointly owned or has a named Beneficiary, is that it is subject to Probate and eventually passes according to governing State Law

The fundamental considerations that govern an efficient Estate Plan are:  

  • The actual value of Assets contained in one’s Estate
  • Who / what actually owns each asset & in what capacity it is titled (Individual, LLC, Sub S etc.)
  • Who / what is the current Beneficiary designation relative to each asset (Individual, Charity etc.)
  • What is the desired distribution intent of each Owner for each piece of property in the event of death or incapacity

Vital Estate Planning considerations & supporting documents are:

  • Wills
  • Trusts
  • Living Trusts
  • Power of Attorney
  • Health Care Directives
  • Living Wills
  • Guardianships for Minors
  • Special Needs Planning
  • Philanthropic Giving

Strategic Planning Considerations are:

  • Estate Tax considerations Federal & State
  • Titling by Contract - Beneficiaries, POD, TOD, ITF
  • Asset Protection & Property Ownership 
  • Gifting
  • Life Insurance
  • Trust planning

A trust is a fiduciary arrangement that allows a third party, or trustee, to hold assets on behalf of one or more beneficiaries. Trusts can be arranged in many ways and can specify exactly how and when the assets pass to the beneficiaries.

The primary purposes for having a trust:

  • Protect Property
  • Greater Control of Assets
  • Avoid Probate
  • Mitigate Taxes
  • Privacy Protection
  • Incapacitation
  • Flexibility
  • Assure proper usage of Assets passed to Beneficiaries

A-B Trust

  • Joint Trust created by Married couple
  • Each Spouse places assets in the trust and names a final Beneficiary other than the Spouse
  • The purpose is minimizing Estate taxes

Charitable Lead Trust

  • Provide income to Charitable organization for specific time period
  • At conclusion donated assets returned or redistributed to another

Charitable Remainder Trust

  • Strategy to avoid Capital gains on sale of appreciated property
  • Secures income tax credits for donation of property into trust
  • Generates an income stream based on the fair market value of asset
  • Ultimately benefits the Philanthropy of Donor’s choice

Credit Shelter Trust / Bypass Trust

  • Pass assets into trust for benefit of surviving spouse
  • Since assets do not pass directly they avoid inclusion on Spousal estate
  • At survivor death estate pass asset to beneficiary partially Estate tax free
  • Unfunded uses annual gifts from Grantor to pay premiums

Donor Advised Fund

  • Separately identified fund held and administered by Public charity
  • Client makes contribution for immediate tax deduction
  • Client serves as Advisor to fund

Dynasty Trust

  • Transfer wealth to Grandchildren free of generation skipping transfer tax

Grantor Retained Annuity Trust

  • Donor sets up Trust as annuity, receiving annual payment for fixed period
  • At end of annuity period remainder passes on to trust beneficiary as gift
  • Trust beneficiary must be family member

Intentionally Defective Guarantor Trust / IDGT

  • Asset protection device structured to protect personal residence
  • For tax purposes IDGT is disregarded as entity when Grantor makes transfer to IDGT irrevocable grantor trust
  • Client sells residence to IDGT for fair market value in exchange for an installment note, enters into lease with IDGT to live in residence paying (FMV) non-deductible rent to IDGT (not considered income)
  • IDGT pays the Client annual installment payments via installment note (not considered income)
  • If property has mortgage IDGT makes mortgage payments which are deductible to Client / Grantor as if house is owned individually

In-Trust For (ITF)

  • An account tool for parents and grandparents to set aside funds for minors, to make investment decisions and to potentially split income for tax purposes

Irrevocable Living Trust

  • Estate planning tool transferring assets for purpose of tax savings
  • Upon death proceeds bypass probate

Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust

  • Purpose is to pass Life insurance proceeds Estate tax free to beneficiaries
  • Funder transfers income generating assets to trust to pay premiums

Revocable Living Trust

  • Deed property to heirs, but Grantor retains control during lifetime
  • Upon death proceeds bypass probate
  • Upon death Beneficiaries entitled to tax advantages of Irrevocable Trust

Spousal Lifetime Access Trust (SLAT)

  • Estate planning tool for a wealthy married couple wishing to reduce estate taxes and to protect assets from creditors
  • A SLAT is an irrevocable trust that one spouse establishes for the benefit of the other spouse, and if properly structured, the assets in a SLAT are not taxable in either spouse’s estate and are not available to either spouse’s creditors
  • Simultaneously the beneficiary-spouse may receive distributions of income and / or principal from the SLAT and thus will benefit from the gifted assets

What are the Benefits of Tax Deferral? The immediate advantage of paying less tax in the current year provides a strong incentive for many individuals to fund their tax-deferred accounts. The general thinking is that the immediate tax benefit of current contributions outweighs the negative tax implications of future withdrawals.

When individuals retire, they will likely generate less taxable income and thus find themselves in a lower tax bracket. High earners are typically strongly encouraged to max out their tax-deferred accounts to minimize their current tax burden. Also, by receiving an immediate tax advantage, investors can put more money into their accounts.

Individual Tax Strategies

  • Traditional IRA’s - Uses before tax dollars, so there is a deduction available for contributions. The account grows tax free until distribution
  • Roth IRA’s- Funded with after tax dollars, there is no current year deduction. The growth and distribution are tax-free.
  • SEP IRA’s - a retirement savings plan established by employers for the benefit of their employees and themselves. It can also be established by self-employed individuals. Employers may make tax-deductible contributions on behalf of eligible employees to their SEP IRAs. They are often used by small businesses and sole proprietorships. The maximum contributions are subject to IRS limits but are greater than traditional IRA’s. They are funded with before tax dollars by the employer so there is a tax deduction available to the employer.
  • Solo 401(K) - A Solo 401(k) can only be used by business owners who have no employees eligible to participate in the plan. You will set up your plan eligibility requirements in the Solo 401(k) plan documents used to establish your plan legally. The IRS has set limits on when employees must be included in your plan, so be sure to follow the rules. If an employee meets your plan eligibility, then you must include them and begin following certain testing and discrimination rules, which may require you to hire a benefits consulting or administration firm to help you. The one exception to the no-employee rule for a Solo 401(k) is for a spouse who earns income from your business. In 2021, your spouse can contribute up to $19,500 as an employee (plus the catch-up provision if 50 or older), and you can make the same percentage of employer contribution that you made for yourself (up to 25% of compensation). In 2022, this contribution limit is increased to $20,500 as an employee (plus the catch-up provision). This exception effectively allows you to double the amount you can contribute as a family.

Tax Qualified Plans / Personal    

  •  IRA’s, Roth IRA’s
  • Roth Conversions – Taxes due on conversion
  • Inherited IRA’s – Pass on Account to Heirs


  • The annual Gift Tax exclusion per recipient is $16,000, and the recipient does not have to declare that Gift as Income (unless it later earns interest). Gifts between spouses are unlimited and generally don’t trigger a gift tax return. Gifts to nonprofits are charitable donations, not gifts.

Tax Loss Harvesting

  • Investments held in a non-retirement account that have a negative value if sold at a loss, create losses to offset gains on other investments or ordinary income.

Monetized Installment Sales

  • Is a special type of installment sale whereby a seller of appreciated assets attempts to defer U.S. Federal income tax liability over a period of years while currently receiving cash or other liquid assets via a monetization transaction, such as a loan.

Depending upon your personal and overall family situation, we can discuss your options for Pre-Need Planning or considering a Final Expense policy to cover your end-of-life arrangements.

Final Expense insurance and Pre-Need Planning are different ways to pay for funeral and burial costs. The terms are often used interchangeably and may seem like the same thing, but there are subtle differences. Both methods provide funding for end-of-life expenses, and the process of choosing either one encourages people to make plans for their passing. Advance planning allows you to document your final wishes and make arrangements according to your personal preferences, alleviating your loved ones of significant stress and uncertainty while they're mourning.

Final Expense Coverage

Final expense insurance is a type of life insurance policy used to pay the funeral and burial costs of the insured person after they die. This plan allows you to choose a beneficiary – usually a trusted family member – to manage the proceeds after your death, using the funds to cover funeral or cremation costs as necessary. Funeral insurance plans guarantee a fixed amount of insurance proceeds, and the policy is usually based on expected final expense costs.

Pre-Need Planning

This type of insurance policy is specifically designed to cover the cost of pre-planned funeral, cremation, and burial services. Pre-need insurance allows you to plan your funeral or cremation service (per your individual preferences) and pay for the costs in advance. It might seem overwhelming, but making funeral plans sooner rather than later helps you get your affairs in order. Paying for the funeral in advance is also a thoughtful gift for your family in the wake of your death, and helps to protect them from any financial stress in their time of grief.

It's never too early to begin your plan

Based on your personal situation and family dynamics, we can help guide you through the advantages or disadvantages of considering Financial Expense coverage or implementing a Pre-Need Plan. Either way, you will have the peace-of-mind knowing that your affairs and wishes will be in order at the time of your passing.

One of the most critical aspects of your business is knowing its value.

Without knowing the true value of your business you will not know:

  • How profitable the business is
  • If buy-sell and other agreements are properly funded
  • A fair market price

A proper business valuation can do all of this. By a review of the past several years tax documents and other basic business information we can create a detailed 29 page Business Valuation.

This information is necessary if and when you:

  • Apply for Life Insurance, whether its for the business or personal
  • Determining the proper coverage for Property and Casualty Insurance
  • Apply for a loan/line of credit/pandemic relief
  • Expand your operations
  • Pass the business on to the next generation
  • Sell your business

How we value your business:

  • Comprehensive analysis of Business supporting multiple business & personal planning issues
  • 4 Values – Asset value, Equity value, Enterprise value, Liquidation value
  • Formula Methods 
    1. Objective Factors with allowances for special circumstances
    2. Capitalization of Earnings (10X average earnings over last 5 years)
    3. Certified appraisal by Independent Service, Combination of Methods
  • IRS accepted Valuation Factors - History & nature of Business, Degree of Business risk involved, State of national economy & specific industry, Business financials (Balance sheet, Tax returns)
  • Balance sheet determines liquidity, working capital, long term indebtedness, net worth & book value
  • Book Value / Assets minus Liabilities divided by number of outstanding shares
  • Earning capacity of Business / P&L for prior 3 years, Net profit after tax, Payments of dividends on Preferred Stock
  • Dividend paying capacity / Closely held corporations avoid double taxation of dividends by paying salaries, bonuses & benefits
  • Goodwill / IRS formula Excess of net earnings@ verified return on net tangible assets
  • Previous sales of stock
  • Fair market value of Publicly traded stock of comparable businesses

A tax strategy is a plan for reducing taxes, regardless of your business or investment situation. It is a strategy developed to ethically ensure you pay the least amount of tax allowable by law.

Retained Earnings (C Corporations)

  • Are defined as cumulative net income since corporate inception, minus dividends that have been declared since inception. These earnings are reported in Stockholder’s equity section of the balance sheet. The retained surplus that isn’t distributed to partners and shareholders is subject to taxation if the organization’s retained earnings reach a $250,000 threshold. Any amount beyond this becomes subject to a supplemental corporation tax at 39.6 percent unless the organization is able to justify a significant reinvestment of profits. The IRS makes exceptions on supplemental tax liability when businesses demonstrate how they plan to use these retained earnings.

Family Limited Partnerships

  • Are a legitimate business structure used by families to pool their resources for business and investing purposes. Each family member involved in the partnership becomes a shareholder and has specific powers and authority based on the partner role the charter or operating agreement as either a General or Limited Partner.
  • Advantages of a FLP are Asset Protection, Avoiding Probate since FLP assets are not subject to probate although each person’s share in the FLP is subject to probate, and Business Succession Planning for passing on Business interests in the event of a Member’s death.

Business Related – Simple IRA’s 401K’s

  • 401(k) - Employer sponsored retirement plan. Contributions are often taken directly from payroll.  Employee contributions are made with pre-tax dollars and are tax deductible.  Provisions can and often do allow for Employer Matching contributions up to a specified percentage of income.

  •  403(b)- A retirement account designed for certain employees of public schools and other tax-exempt organizations such as hospitals, churches and certain other medical facilities. Participants may include teachers, school administrators, professors, government employees, nurses, doctors, and librarian sallows participants to save money for retirement through payroll deductions while enjoying certain tax benefits. There's also an option for the employer to match part of the employee's contribution.

  • Deferred Compensation Plans - Retirement plans that allow an employee to defer part of their compensation until a future date.  The employee does not pay income tax on the deferral until it is received.  They can be qualified plans such as a 401K or 403b or nonqualified.   A non qualified plan is typically used for highly compensated employees and can be set up so it does not need to include all employees,

  • Defined Benefit Plans - These are like traditional Pension Plans.  They are employer sponsored plans that will pay a benefit based on factors such as salary and years with the company.  They have a set amount that they will provide at retirement and contributions are made to reach that specified amount.

As your business grows and thrives you need to consider planning for the future.


As a successful business owner, ask yourself these questions:

  • How will the business be passed on?

  • What happens if a key person passes away?

  • What happens if an owner or key employee can’t work anymore?

  • What happens when an owner retires?

Buy-Sell Agreements

A Buy Sell agreement is a legal document between the partners of any business, whether it’s a partnership, LLC or is fully incorporated.  It simply lays out how the business will be passed on to surviving partners in the event that one of the partners passes away, retires or becomes disabled.   By having a pre-arranged agreement in place you can avoid costly litigation, animosity and confusion, all of which can end the business permanently.

The Buy-Sell Agreement should be drawn up by an experienced attorney.  The most efficient way to fund the agreement is with the use of life insurance.  A knowledgeable financial advisor should work in conjunction with your attorney and other professionals to determine the proper structure and funding for the agreement.

There are two types of Buy-Sell Agreements to Consider:

Buy-Sell Cross Purchase

  • Each owner obtains and owns insurance on the other owners
  • The proceeds from the insurance are used to buy the business interest in accordance with the buy-sell agreement.
  • The life Insurance proceeds are received income tax-free
  • Premiums are not a deductible expense
  • Each owner pays for the policies on the other owners

Buy-Sell Entity Purchase

  • The business obtains and owns insurance on the owners
  • The proceeds from the insurance are used to buy the business interest in accordance with the buy-sell agreement
  • The life insurance proceeds are received income tax-free
  • Premiums are not deductible to the individual owners
  • Premiums may be deductible as an expense to the business

Key Person Insurance protects the business against the loss of an owner or key employee. 

  • The business obtains life insurance and is the owner of the policy on the key employee.
  • At retirement the business may use the policy fund a non-qualified retirement plan
  • Insurance proceeds are income tax free to the company
  • Premium payments are not deductible

What is Deferred Compensation?

A deferred compensation plan withholds a portion of an employee’s pay until a specified date, usually retirement. The lump sum owed to an employee in this type of plan is paid out on that date. Examples of deferred compensation plans include pensions, 401(k) retirement plans, and employee stock options.

Qualified vs. Non-Qualified Deferred Compensation Plans

A qualified deferred compensation plan complies with the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) and include 401(k),  and 403(b) plans. They are required to have contribution limits and be nondiscriminatory, open to any employee of the company, and beneficial to all. They are also more secure, being held in a trust account. Because they utilize before tax dollars they are tax qualified and reduce the employees current year income they are tax deductible.

A non-qualified compensation plan is a written agreement between employee and employers in which which part of the employee’s compensation is withheld by the company, invested, and then given to the employee at some point in the future. There are no restrictions on contribution limits and may be discriminatory, open to select employees, and highly compensated employees. The funds can be held directly by the employer and may be exposed in bankruptcy.

Non-Qualified Deferred Comp (NQDC)

  • The Plan allows a service provider (e.g., an employee) to earn wages, bonuses, or other compensation in one year but receive the earnings - and defer the income tax on them- to a later year. Income Splitting is when a higher income family member transfers a portion of income to a lower income family member through some legal means, such as hiring the lower income family member and deducting the cost of the labor as a legitimate business expense.

Traditional IRA’s: Uses before tax dollars, so there is a deduction available for contributions. The account grows tax free until distribution.

Roth IRA’s: Funded with after tax dollars, there is no current year deduction. The growth and distribution are tax-free.

401(k): Employer sponsored retirement plan. Contributions are often taken directly from payroll. Employee contributions are made with pre-tax dollars and are tax deductible. Provisions can and often do allow for Employer Matching contributions up to a specified percentage of income.

Deferred Compensation Plans: Retirement plans that allow an employee to defer part of their compensation until a future date.  The employee does not pay income tax on the deferral until it is received. They can be qualified plans such as a 401K or 403b or nonqualified. A non-qualified plan is  typically used for highly compensated employees and can be set up so it does not need to include all employees.

Defined Benefit Plans: These are like traditional Pension Plans. They are employer sponsored plans that will pay a benefit based on factors such as salary and years with the company. They have a set amount that they will provide at retirement and contributions are made to reach that specified amount.

Passing the Business to Employees

ESOP (Employee Stock Option Plan) 

  • An employee benefit plan that enables employees to own all or part of the business
  • It is a tax-qualified Retirement Account
  • A Trust is set up to purchase shares of the company for the employees participating in the trust.
  • Employee gains ownership share in the business
  • Upon leaving the company, the employees shares are purchased by the business at Fair Market Value.
  • This type of retirement plan gives employees ownership and some control over the business which creates greater retention and productivity.

ERSOP (Employee Rollover Stock Option Plan) 

  • An employee benefit plan that enables employees to own all or part of the business
  • Tax-qualified retirement plan that allows employees to rollover all or part of an existing qualified retirement account into the ERSOP where company stock is purchased.
  • The company must be a C-Corp
  • Sometimes referred to as Entrepreneur Rollover Stock Option Plan
  • Allows employee to rollover an existing IRA or 401(K) into a new business
    • An ERSOP uses the entrepreneur’s 401(k), IRA, or other qualified plans to fund the start-up. The ERSOP process looks something like this: establish a legal entity; get a taxpayer identification number and checking account for the entity; set up a trust and get a taxpayer identification number and a checking account for the trust; (hopefully) get a determination letter from the IRS specifying that the trust qualifies as an everyday employee stock option purchase plan (ESOP); roll the entrepreneur’s retirement accounts over to the trust checking account and then to the entity checking account; the entity transfers entity stock into the trust. At that point the money is in the business checking account and the business stock is in the ESOP.

Through our many carriers you can review the need and cost of group term life, short and long term disability coverage as well as dental and vision benefits.

Group Term Life: includes simplified enrollment, guaranteed issue up to $50,000. for groups of two to nine lives, and accelerated death benefits for hospice care. You will also have access to coverage for groups up to 500 lives with expanded benefits for dependents, and much more flexible benefit schedules.

Group Short Term Disability: responds to the fact that everyone who needs a paycheck needs to protect it. This is easy, flexible  and affordable income protection for short term illnesses and injuries. Typical maximum weekly benefit is $2,309 up to 70% of your income with partial and residual benefits available. Claim coverage will last a maximum 52 weeks in most cases.

Group Long Term Disability: one in three Americans will have a disability that will prevent them from working for 90 days or longer. One in seven can expect to be disabled five years or more. Financial hardship caused by the loss of income resulting from a disability is one of the primary causes of personal bankruptcy. A few points more to remember, there are NO earnings tests, maximum monthly benefits up to $24,000. elimination period from 30 days to 60 months, own occupation definition of disability in some cases with rate guarantees up to 3 years.

Group Dental Coverage: This benefit requires 10 or more employees to offer the greatest amount of benefits related to services such as preventive care (cleanings), basic care (pulled tooth) and major care (root canal). Dental coverage can be written on an individual basis with a reduced level of coverage and care.

Group Vision Care: Plans include coverage for a comprehensive eye exams, monitoring of medical conditions involving advanced vision issues and LASIK care. For the purchase of eye ware use the VSP network available throughout the United States. Eye exam frequency is every 12 Months and eye ware can be purchased every 24 months.

Voluntary benefits, otherwise known as supplemental insurance are products that are typically offered by employers and are mostly or fully paid for by employees via payroll deduction at a reduced group rate.

Benefits can include:

  • Term or Whole Life Coverage
  • Dental Coverage
  • Vision
  • Disability Income Coverage
  • Accident Coverage
  • Critical Illness Coverage
  • Hospital Indemnity Coverage
  • Identity Theft Coverage
  • Travel Insurance
  • Medical Insurance For Pets

Why do companies offer voluntary benefits?

Voluntary benefits are usually offered by employers as businesses can get a lower rate than individuals, and it is also inexpensive for employers to offer benefit programs. A business will use these programs as an incentive for employees and to retain a talented workforce. It is also an opportunity for an employer to decrease their payroll taxes.

Why are voluntary benefits important to an employer?

If a company can offer a voluntary benefits package, they can opt to reduce their core benefits package to save money while simultaneously offering personal insurance benefits at a reduced group price to employees who may not be able to afford this type of coverage on their own. In this way a small business can compete with larger, more established companies for top talent.

Are voluntary benefits pre-tax?

It depends on the type of voluntary benefit, some are pre-tax paid by employer and some are post-tax paid employee.

There are many factors outside of your control that have an impact on the national and international stock markets- politics, pandemics, military conflicts, social media not to mention economic influences. Many investors lack the resources to make investment decisions when faced with this unpredictability. Often there is an overreaction or underreaction to market volatility, putting your investment goals at risk.

Under the guidance of Paul Dietrich, Chief Investment Strategist for B. Riley Wealth Management we can offer access to professionally managed portfolios under the B. Riley Fairfax Investment Strategies. These market strategies are managed with an overall strategy of building wealth in up markets, while attempting to shield the investments from losses in a severe long-term down market. These strategies are available to individuals, businesses and private institutions.


  • Conservative / Alternative Strategy to grow Portfolios designed to provide retirement assets that will last a lifetime 
  • The Portfolio is broadly diversified across four distinct asset classes: Long Term Bonds, Precious Metals, Stocks, Short Term Treasuries
  • Designed so a negative event impacting one allocation should be offset by a more favorable response in one or more of the other asset allocations
  • Moderate Strategy
  • Invests in Exchange Traded Funds (ETF’s) to provide an equity portfolio that is global in scope and highly diversified.
  • Moderately Conservative Strategy
  • Invests in large-cap dividend paying value stocks.
  • Moderately Conservative Strategy
  • Invests in large-cap value stocks with a mix of bonds
Within all of his investment strategies, Paul Dietrich believes in and invests in “value-oriented companies.”  This investment criteria consists of:
  • Industry sector leaders based on Market Capitalization
  • Low price to earning ratios (P/E) compared to industry sector
  • High equity returns
  • High  free cash flow production
  • Price momentum evidenced by outperforming the broad market or their industry sector.
About Paul Dietrich
The B. Riley Fairfax investment strategies are professionally managed portfolios under the direction of Paul Dietrich, Chief Investment Strategist for B. Riley Wealth Management and offered through B. Riley Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Adviser with the Securities & Exchange Commission. Mr. Dietrich has been portfolio manager of the B. Riley Fairfax investment strategies since their inception dates which range from 2000 to 2012. Prior to joining B. Riley Wealth Management in late 2019, Mr. Dietrich served as CEO and Chief Investment Officer of Fairfax Global Markets, LLC from 2012 to 2020 and as CEO and Chief Investment Officer of Foxhall Capital Management, Inc. from 1999 to 2012. He previously worked as an international corporate attorney with Squire, Sanders & Dempsey (now Squire Patton Boggs) and Jones Day advising on privatization and economic development issues to the World Bank, as well as several governments in Asia and Eastern Europe. He also previously served as a member of the Advisory Board of the John Templeton Foundation. Paul is well respected and is a frequent guest on financial news networks such as Fox Business and CNBC.
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