Case Studies

Real-life case studies show examples of the financial planning and wealth management process and how others are making their financial dreams come true.

Planning for Young Families Case Study photo concept with family lying in circle with heads together.

Case Study: Planning for Young Families

Ravi has worked for over 10 years in the IT department for a large airline. After working as a director of human resources for the same airline for the last 10 years, Kaylee recently changed jobs and joined a medical services company. At this point in their careers, they feel it’s important to have financial security, the ability to provide for their family, and enough assets available to enjoy in retirement.

For young families, it’s important to start planning now. A lot of people fear that they won’t have enough assets for an advisor to manage, but that is often unfounded. There are plenty of clients that have zero assets that are fresh out of medical school or just starting their careers. That doesn’t mean they’re not going to be good clients and a good fit.

Kaylee and Ravi are just starting out on their financial planning journey and have their highest earning years ahead of them.

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Case Study Chris Hodges on retiring early depicted by business woman standing with arms crossed in front of a office building hallway.

Case Study: Retiring Early and Taxes

At 55 years of age, Chris Hodges’ employer, MNA Corporation, has offered her an early retirement. Chris has accumulated $4 million in her company’s profit sharing plan, including $3 million in MNA stock. With 75 percent of the plan concentrated in MNA stock and a basis of $250,000, Chris wants to diversify her portfolio but knows that most withdrawals from a profit sharing plan are 100 percent taxable as ordinary income.

Since she is 55 and recently stopped working, Chris’s financial advisor lets her in on a little-known tax advantage. Chris can withdraw all of the MNA stock from the plan and pay income tax on only the plan’s basis in the stock. The difference between the plan’s basis in the stock and the fair market value of the stock is known as net unrealized appreciation (NUA) or Section 402(e) securities. NUA is taxed at capital gain tax rates, which are lower than ordinary

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Preparing a Business Owner for Exit Case Study Businessman using laptop computer in office lobby or on cafe terrace. Happy middle aged man, entrepreneur, small business owner working online.

Case Study: Exit Strategy for Small Business

Derek owns a successful cabinet manufacturing company. He enjoys the challenge of running a business and wrangling the intricate aspects that must work together. He sought the help of a professional financial advisor because he knew he needed an exit strategy for small business.

Small business owners have unique challenges. The products, people, vendors, and customer relationships require a very delicate balance. From a risk management perspective, not only are owners tasked with caring for themselves and their families, but also their family of employees. It’s a challenge to juggle the many relationships in conjunction with the overall financial picture.
Why Preparing an Exit Strategy for Small Business is Important
The financial independence and retirement of business owners oftentimes are tied to an eventual transfer or a sale of the business. Business exit planning is the process of

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Creating a retirement income stream in retirement.

Case Study: Ready to Retire

When Terri and John came to their advisor, they were nearing retirement and looking to ensure three goals could be met once they were ready to retire:

1) Do we have enough to retire?
2) How do we protect ourselves and our assets?
3) What can we do to help our kids and grandkids in a tax-efficient way?
What did making the decision to retire look like?
John worked in the information technology industry and was working far too many hours than he wanted. While he was moving up the ladder and enjoyed meeting people, the last couple of working years were tough. For him, retirement came pretty easily.

Terri is a CPA who has worked in various accounting organizations and managing people through the years. While she admits, the last couple of years were a little tough when she got up to go to work and John was still in bed, she wasn’t sure if she should retire. When major changes started

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Michael and Katelyn Connor Case Study on donor advised funds tax deduction depicts a man and woman looking into the camera with his hand on her shoulder.

Case Study: Donor-Advised Funds Tax Deduction

Michael and Katelyn Connor’s adjusted gross income is projected to be $200,000. With a total net worth of $2 million, including qualified retirement accounts and other investments, the couple will be faced with a $43,000 income tax bill this year.

The Connors’ accountant recommends creating a Donor-Advised Fund (DAF) for charitable giving. By transferring $50,000 worth of appreciated securities to their DAF, Michael and Katelyn avoid the capital gain on the assets and can deduct the gift as a charitable deduction against their adjusted gross income.
Donor Advised Funds Tax Deduction
Michael and Katelyn will use their new DAF to engage and educate their children about the importance of charitable giving. They include their children in the process of granting their funds and also allow them to make recommendations for a portion of the DAF’s annual distributions. The Connor children are

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