Friday, December 30, 2011
When working with wealthy immigrants as a financial planner, planners should realize that they should be providing “family-style” attention. You have to meet your clients in person because they are more inclined to give money to people they know. One planner attends client family weddings and parties to know his clients more intimately.
Many immigrant clients do not want to declare everything that they own, so they do not get the maximum tax deductions that they could. When clients come in with this mindset, it is helpful to point out the section of the U.S. Code that makes lying to the government a punishable offense.
Another wrinkle with immigrant clients is that some of them will want their wealth to be managed according to their religion. Many mainstream investments may be in violation of Islamic precepts or other religious beliefs, so one planner considers this wealth management to be “challenging and interesting.”
Since many clients will still have strong connections with their home countries, planners should become skilled with cross-border estate planning and rules for charitable giving overseas.
Karen E. Klein, Financial Planning, American-Style, Financial Planning Magazine, Nov. 1. 2011.
Special thanks to Jim Hillhouse (WealthCounsel) for bringing this article to my attention.