Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

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GerryL
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Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by GerryL »

This starts with a rant and will end with some questions.

I am sitting here an hour and a half after a prospective professional fiduciary was supposed to come to my home for an initial interview. She chose the time and sent an acknowledgement email after we spoke on the phone. I had to arrange my schedule to be here and agreed to her hourly fee for the appointment.

I have been trying for over a month to set up at least 3 in-depth interviews with pro-fids so I can move forward with setting up an estate plan. I am a solo ager with only one next-gen relative in another state. It has been very frustrating.

Using referrals from my attorney, an attorney friend and a friend:

Contacted one who only wanted to communicate through e-mail. Had no interest in talking to me and essentially responded that they don’t establish a relationship with client. “Just put us down as successor trustee and send us a copy of estate plan. When ‘trigger event’ occurs, that’s when we step in.” (I responded that I am not inclined to name a total stranger as my successor trustee. She responded, “I understand.” End of contact.)

Two others have failed to respond to repeated phone inquiries over several weeks.

Two others have not responded to initial phone calls. I will try again.

I have a meeting set up downtown with another who was enthusiastically recommended by both attorneys. Thursday. At a central location. In the mood I’m in right now, I am thinking, “Yeah. She’ll probably stand me up, too.”

1) How would you deal with this situation? How many “chances” do you give someone whose services you need when RELIABILITY and good COMMUNICATION are particularly important?

2) My inclination is if/when Ms No-Show e-mails or tries to call that I just ignore her – unless she says she was in an accident or unconscious in the hospital. (But then, what does that say about her firm’s coverage in a case like this?)

3) After today’s experience do I send a “reminder” email to the person I’m supposed to meet Thursday? Should I need to? If she needs a reminder, is she someone I can count on to act on my behalf?

I will try again with the two people I have tried to call only once but have no intention of trying again to reach the ones who have ignored three calls. And will probably ignore any calls from them if they start catching up on month-old messages.

I’m reaching the end of my list of recommended pro-fids. I don’t want to deal with a bank because it is about more than looking over my finances. Can anyone else who has had to shop for a professional fiduciary to add to their estate plan offer any advice?
123
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by 123 »

If the arrangements for the meeting/interview included any reference to having discussions with multiple candidates I think that might lessen the likelihood of them showing up. If a professional infers he/she's coming to a meeting for the purpose of being "anointed" they're more likely to show up.
The closest helping hand is at the end of your own arm.
fposte
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by fposte »

I have no knowledge, but I'm going to be in a similar position myself, so I'm keenly interested, especially since I'm in a small town and my choices are likely to be limited. What professional credentials did these people have--were they lawyers, accountants, something else? Was this their main business or was it just a service they were able to offer? And what was the charge for the initial meeting?
Billionaire
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Billionaire »

I'm sorry to hear about this frustrating situation. Have you tried your bank or brokerage company? I thought most of the big ones provide the service.

My wife, a cancer survivor, is currently going through problems communicating with one of her Drs. Numerous attempts to contact him have resulted in zero responses. We also have similar problems with contractors to perform work at the house. It's maddening.
Gill
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Gill »

GerryL wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 2:47 pm
I don’t want to deal with a bank because it is about more than looking over my finances. Can anyone else who has had to shop for a professional fiduciary to add to their estate plan offer any advice?
Why not? Banks and trust companies are in the business of being a professional fiduciary. They offer what no individual can: Perpetual existence, financial responsibility, accessibility (never go on vacation, get sick or die), group judgment employing the skills of many individuals, expertise in investments, tax and trust laws, experience and oversight by regulatory authorities. You can certainly find a corporate fiduciary interested in your trust. I would never consider an individual to act in this role, even though they call themselves professional fiduciaries.
Gill
Cost basis is redundant. One has a basis in an investment | One advises and gives advice | One should follow the principle of investing one's principal
inbox788
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by inbox788 »

GerryL wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 2:47 pmI am a solo ager with only one next-gen relative in another state. It has been very frustrating.
...I’m reaching the end of my list of recommended pro-fids. I don’t want to deal with a bank because it is about more than looking over my finances. Can anyone else who has had to shop for a professional fiduciary to add to their estate plan offer any advice?
I would pretty much give up on someone like that after the experience you had and move on. It's quite a problem finding good reliable professionals who don't charge exorbitant fees, while there are plenty of AUM guys that provide little, if any added value for folks like us. And even if you found a good one now, they may not be around many years from now when you really need them.

What are you looking for? Did your attorney do estate planning, a will or living trust? Living will or health care directive? With only one heir or charities, the disposition of your financial assets seems relatively straightforward via TOD clauses or will. Do you have any unusual or complicated items? Real estate other than your home or a vacation home? Do you have a business? Does the relative have special needs?

While not ideal, I've come to accept that most folks can do without a lot of complicated planning and costly "what if" prevention for unlikely unknowns. make a list of your worries and do what you can to eliminate them as early as possible. If you have extra funds in checking or savings account, spend it or transfer it or gift it or donate it.

That should take care of most things, and the little that remains is more contingency for disability and naming an executor. If you cannot find an adequate individual or professional conservator at this time, you might let your attorney (or friend or relative) handle that if necessary.
visualguy
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by visualguy »

I hope I'm wrong, but I don't think there's a good solution for what you're looking for outside the family, or a really strong friendship with someone younger. The latter is rare; one example is the only truly solo ager I know who was a business owner, and she left her business to a couple of younger long-time employees who were close to her, and they managed things for her and helped her toward the end of her life (passed away recently in her 90s).
heyyou
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by heyyou »

Both that I met, wanted to immediately transfer my assets to an AUM financial firm. Of course, that was not on my list of desired services from either of them.

I did hire the local guy whose reputation from the internet is almost winning golf tournaments at our small town course. His rate is $90 an hour, and so far, I haven't used any time since the first interview.

Fiduciaries are registered with the state/county courts, so there would be a list of them, just not conveniently found with a "web" search.
visualguy
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by visualguy »

inbox788 wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 4:20 pm I would pretty much give up on someone like that after the experience you had and move on. It's quite a problem finding good reliable professionals who don't charge exorbitant fees, while there are plenty of AUM guys that provide little, if any added value for folks like us. And even if you found a good one now, they may not be around many years from now when you really need them.

What are you looking for? Did your attorney do estate planning, a will or living trust? Living will or health care directive? With only one heir or charities, the disposition of your financial assets seems relatively straightforward via TOD clauses or will. Do you have any unusual or complicated items? Real estate other than your home or a vacation home? Do you have a business? Does the relative have special needs?

While not ideal, I've come to accept that most folks can do without a lot of complicated planning and costly "what if" prevention for unlikely unknowns. make a list of your worries and do what you can to eliminate them as early as possible. If you have extra funds in checking or savings account, spend it or transfer it or gift it or donate it.

That should take care of most things, and the little that remains is more contingency for disability and naming an executor. If you cannot find an adequate individual or professional conservator at this time, you might let your attorney (or friend or relative) handle that if necessary.
This is not the "little that remains" - it's the main issue. I can't speak for the OP, but what happens if and when you are incapacitated is typically the big problem.
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LilyFleur
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by LilyFleur »

visualguy wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 4:32 pm
inbox788 wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 4:20 pm I would pretty much give up on someone like that after the experience you had and move on. It's quite a problem finding good reliable professionals who don't charge exorbitant fees, while there are plenty of AUM guys that provide little, if any added value for folks like us. And even if you found a good one now, they may not be around many years from now when you really need them.

What are you looking for? Did your attorney do estate planning, a will or living trust? Living will or health care directive? With only one heir or charities, the disposition of your financial assets seems relatively straightforward via TOD clauses or will. Do you have any unusual or complicated items? Real estate other than your home or a vacation home? Do you have a business? Does the relative have special needs?

While not ideal, I've come to accept that most folks can do without a lot of complicated planning and costly "what if" prevention for unlikely unknowns. make a list of your worries and do what you can to eliminate them as early as possible. If you have extra funds in checking or savings account, spend it or transfer it or gift it or donate it.

That should take care of most things, and the little that remains is more contingency for disability and naming an executor. If you cannot find an adequate individual or professional conservator at this time, you might let your attorney (or friend or relative) handle that if necessary.
This is not the "little that remains" - it's the main issue. I can't speak for the OP, but what happens if and when you are incapacitated is typically the big problem.
Exactly.
I am concerned about this as well... if I end up incapacitated, my own children will be working, perhaps raising children, etc. Who knows if they will even be living near me at that point? I would like the option of a backup corporate trustee (with administrative services such as paying bills) if needed, as well as a corporate executor. I cannot seem to find online what the minimum amount in a trust is for Schwab, although I think I saw that they do not offer administrative services at this time but are considering adding it.

I have been very happy with Schwab, and my fiduciary advisor is quite good, although I only use the free yearly complimentary visits at this time, because I like managing my money myself.
EHEngineer
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by EHEngineer »

I did a phone consultation with these folks and I liked them. https://www.fiduciarypartners.com/
Or, you can ... decline to let me, a stranger on the Internet, egg you on to an exercise in time-wasting, and you could say "I'm probably OK and I don't care about it that much." -Nisiprius
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GerryL
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by GerryL »

visualguy wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 4:32 pm
inbox788 wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 4:20 pm I would pretty much give up on someone like that after the experience you had and move on. It's quite a problem finding good reliable professionals who don't charge exorbitant fees, while there are plenty of AUM guys that provide little, if any added value for folks like us. And even if you found a good one now, they may not be around many years from now when you really need them.

What are you looking for? Did your attorney do estate planning, a will or living trust? Living will or health care directive? With only one heir or charities, the disposition of your financial assets seems relatively straightforward via TOD clauses or will. Do you have any unusual or complicated items? Real estate other than your home or a vacation home? Do you have a business? Does the relative have special needs?

While not ideal, I've come to accept that most folks can do without a lot of complicated planning and costly "what if" prevention for unlikely unknowns. make a list of your worries and do what you can to eliminate them as early as possible. If you have extra funds in checking or savings account, spend it or transfer it or gift it or donate it.

That should take care of most things, and the little that remains is more contingency for disability and naming an executor. If you cannot find an adequate individual or professional conservator at this time, you might let your attorney (or friend or relative) handle that if necessary.
This is not the "little that remains" - it's the main issue. I can't speak for the OP, but what happens if and when you are incapacitated is typically the big problem.
Thanks for all the input so far. I'll respond to some later, but I wanted to chime in on this.
The "little that remains" is possibly living a long time in cognitive decline. This is a real concern given my family history, but not an immediate concern. It is the hardest part and I'm trying to address it now, while I am still physically and mentally healthy.

I'm really looking for a solution for managing my living situation, not so much my money. My investments are basic Boglehead and I don't need someone mucking around either trying to increase my earnings or siphoning off fees for needless transactions -- or robbing me. If I were to just drop dead, not too complicated. But if I deteriorate but survive over a long period of time, that calls for advanced planning.
MIretired
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by MIretired »

I thought this type of help was most likely from an elder care attorney.
Luckywon
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Luckywon »

GerryL wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 5:24 pm
visualguy wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 4:32 pm
inbox788 wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 4:20 pm I would pretty much give up on someone like that after the experience you had and move on. It's quite a problem finding good reliable professionals who don't charge exorbitant fees, while there are plenty of AUM guys that provide little, if any added value for folks like us. And even if you found a good one now, they may not be around many years from now when you really need them.

What are you looking for? Did your attorney do estate planning, a will or living trust? Living will or health care directive? With only one heir or charities, the disposition of your financial assets seems relatively straightforward via TOD clauses or will. Do you have any unusual or complicated items? Real estate other than your home or a vacation home? Do you have a business? Does the relative have special needs?

While not ideal, I've come to accept that most folks can do without a lot of complicated planning and costly "what if" prevention for unlikely unknowns. make a list of your worries and do what you can to eliminate them as early as possible. If you have extra funds in checking or savings account, spend it or transfer it or gift it or donate it.

That should take care of most things, and the little that remains is more contingency for disability and naming an executor. If you cannot find an adequate individual or professional conservator at this time, you might let your attorney (or friend or relative) handle that if necessary.
This is not the "little that remains" - it's the main issue. I can't speak for the OP, but what happens if and when you are incapacitated is typically the big problem.
Thanks for all the input so far. I'll respond to some later, but I wanted to chime in on this.
The "little that remains" is possibly living a long time in cognitive decline. This is a real concern given my family history, but not an immediate concern. It is the hardest part and I'm trying to address it now, while I am still physically and mentally healthy.

I'm really looking for a solution for managing my living situation, not so much my money. My investments are basic Boglehead and I don't need someone mucking around either trying to increase my earnings or siphoning off fees for needless transactions -- or robbing me. If I were to just drop dead, not too complicated. But if I deteriorate but survive over a long period of time, that calls for advanced planning.
I am also trying to figure out how to handle this.

Amont the problems are that whoever you name now many not be in business when needed, or may not indeed rob you blind or just do a poor job.

Have you considered naming a "Trust Protector" who has powers to appoint and replace a corporate trustee and/or fiduciary? Perhaps you have some friends or family who could serve in this limited role, mainly as a safety check on whatever corporate trustees or fiduciaries are in place. Your estate plan might name the Trust Protector and ask hem to retain a corporate trustee or professional fiduciary upon your incapacity.
Bobby206
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Bobby206 »

MIretired wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 7:25 pm I thought this type of help was most likely from an elder care attorney.
You don't want to pay an attorney $400/hour when you can get a licensed professional fiduciary for $100.

In California there is a list of professional fiduciary licensees at pfac-pro.org but I can't speak to other states.
MIretired
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by MIretired »

Bobby206 wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 8:00 pm
MIretired wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 7:25 pm I thought this type of help was most likely from an elder care attorney.
You don't want to pay an attorney $400/hour when you can get a licensed professional fiduciary for $100.

In California there is a list of professional fiduciary licensees at pfac-pro.org but I can't speak to other states.
I just thought that what the op was looking for was someone to set up things such as power of attorney (POA) for assets, POA for medical directive, estate plan. Seemed the op was largely all set as far as beneficiaries of financial assets, but maybe not real assets, such as property.
Legal things you may not be able to attend to at that time. I think contracts with specific compensation guidelines for POA service can be had.
I'm not sure to what extent someone simply referred to as a fiduciary can fill these bills--I may be wrong. You're a little out-there when without a spouse or close-by relative.
Bobby206
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Bobby206 »

MIretired wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 8:21 pm
Bobby206 wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 8:00 pm
MIretired wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 7:25 pm I thought this type of help was most likely from an elder care attorney.
You don't want to pay an attorney $400/hour when you can get a licensed professional fiduciary for $100.

In California there is a list of professional fiduciary licensees at pfac-pro.org but I can't speak to other states.
I just thought that what the op was looking for was someone to set up things such as power of attorney (POA) for assets, POA for medical directive, estate plan. Seemed the op was largely all set as far as beneficiaries of financial assets, but maybe not real assets, such as property.
Legal things you may not be able to attend to at that time. I think contracts with specific compensation guidelines for POA service can be had.
I'm not sure to what extent someone simply referred to as a fiduciary can fill these bills--I may be wrong. You're a little out-there when without a spouse or close-by relative.
A PFAC serves those exact roles and is perfect for people that don't have trusted family members. I have seen PFACs visiting their clients in nursing homes, filing complaints regarding nursing home conditions, and paying bills. They do it all. They key, in my opinion, is finding someone licensed, bondable, etc... as is available in California and I assume other states too.
fposte
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by fposte »

Bobby206 wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 8:00 pm
MIretired wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 7:25 pm I thought this type of help was most likely from an elder care attorney.
You don't want to pay an attorney $400/hour when you can get a licensed professional fiduciary for $100.
Judging by the OP's experience, getting one is easier said than done.
inbox788
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by inbox788 »

GerryL wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 5:24 pm
visualguy wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 4:32 pm
inbox788 wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 4:20 pmThat should take care of most things, and the little that remains is more contingency for disability and naming an executor. If you cannot find an adequate individual or professional conservator at this time, you might let your attorney (or friend or relative) handle that if necessary.
This is not the "little that remains" - it's the main issue. I can't speak for the OP, but what happens if and when you are incapacitated is typically the big problem.
Thanks for all the input so far. I'll respond to some later, but I wanted to chime in on this.
The "little that remains" is possibly living a long time in cognitive decline. This is a real concern given my family history, but not an immediate concern. It is the hardest part and I'm trying to address it now, while I am still physically and mentally healthy.

I'm really looking for a solution for managing my living situation, not so much my money. My investments are basic Boglehead and I don't need someone mucking around either trying to increase my earnings or siphoning off fees for needless transactions -- or robbing me. If I were to just drop dead, not too complicated. But if I deteriorate but survive over a long period of time, that calls for advanced planning.
I didn't mean to downplay the importance of this matter. And while I didn't recognize this as a main concern, I'm unclear as to how much advance preparation one can make on the matter. I guess this experience highlights the importance of having a succession plan in case the top choices aren't available, before it defaults to the state. And if choosing an individual or small partnership, that they too have a succession plan.

OP, I hope you have better luck with the next interview. And once you have a plan in place, it collects dust and you never need to use it for many more years.

And just a thought, but if the referrals aren't panning out, I'm thinking talking to folks running nursing homes, long term care facilities, hospitals, and other such services might generate some good leads.
bsteiner
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by bsteiner »

inbox788 wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 4:20 pm ... With only one heir or charities, the disposition of your financial assets seems relatively straightforward via TOD clauses or will. ...
Unless he/she wants to provide for that beneficiary in trust rather than outright.
GerryL wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 5:24 pm ...
The "little that remains" is possibly living a long time in cognitive decline. ...
You could give the relative a power of attorney.

But if you want a bank or trust company to step in, banks and trust companies prefer to act as trustees than as agents under a power of attorney. So you would need to create a revocable trust with the bank or trust company as a trustee, either now or when they're needed. The tricky part would be to define when they come in if not at the inception.
MIretired wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 7:25 pm I thought this type of help was most likely from an elder care attorney.
More likely a trusts and estates lawyer since it's not a Medicaid or guardianship matter.
Luckywon wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 7:41 pm ...
Have you considered naming a "Trust Protector" who has powers to appoint and replace a corporate trustee and/or fiduciary? ...
If you trust that person, you could name him/her as trustee.
Bobby206 wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 10:44 am ...
A PFAC serves those exact roles and is perfect for people that don't have trusted family members. I have seen PFACs visiting their clients in nursing homes, filing complaints regarding nursing home conditions, and paying bills. They do it all. They key, in my opinion, is finding someone licensed, bondable, etc... as is available in California and I assume other states too.
Do any other states have this besides California?
goaties
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by goaties »

My childless aunt found someone at her senior center to perform the very tasks I believe the OP is asking about. I have no idea of the specifics, but that might be a good place to start asking questions.

There is a huge entrepreneurial opportunity here. The number of childless/niece-less/nephew-less elders is growing!
BBQ Nut
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by BBQ Nut »

inbox788 wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 4:20 pm
GerryL wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 2:47 pmI am a solo ager with only one next-gen relative in another state. It has been very frustrating.
...I’m reaching the end of my list of recommended pro-fids. I don’t want to deal with a bank because it is about more than looking over my finances. Can anyone else who has had to shop for a professional fiduciary to add to their estate plan offer any advice?
I would pretty much give up on someone like that after the experience you had and move on. It's quite a problem finding good reliable professionals who don't charge exorbitant fees, while there are plenty of AUM guys that provide little, if any added value for folks like us. And even if you found a good one now, they may not be around many years from now when you really need them.

What are you looking for? Did your attorney do estate planning, a will or living trust? Living will or health care directive? With only one heir or charities, the disposition of your financial assets seems relatively straightforward via TOD clauses or will. Do you have any unusual or complicated items? Real estate other than your home or a vacation home? Do you have a business? Does the relative have special needs?

While not ideal, I've come to accept that most folks can do without a lot of complicated planning and costly "what if" prevention for unlikely unknowns. make a list of your worries and do what you can to eliminate them as early as possible. If you have extra funds in checking or savings account, spend it or transfer it or gift it or donate it.

That should take care of most things, and the little that remains is more contingency for disability and naming an executor. If you cannot find an adequate individual or professional conservator at this time, you might let your attorney (or friend or relative) handle that if necessary.
This brings up an interesting question.

Suppose one does enter an agreement with a local fiduciary, or similar, and the said person/firm goes out of business while performing agreed on services.

In CA, would they be legally bound/obligated to discharge their duties to someone else, or just poof...gone?
rustymutt
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by rustymutt »

Billionaire wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 3:38 pm I'm sorry to hear about this frustrating situation. Have you tried your bank or brokerage company? I thought most of the big ones provide the service.

My wife, a cancer survivor, is currently going through problems communicating with one of her Drs. Numerous attempts to contact him have resulted in zero responses. We also have similar problems with contractors to perform work at the house. It's maddening.
I hope you reported them to the local BBB. Without reports, nobody else can be warned. Just a thought.
Think of a society were that doesn't happen, contractors would take advantage of many families. I know, were all in this mess together.

:happy
Even educators need education. And some can be hard headed to the point of needing time out.
Luckywon
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Luckywon »

bsteiner wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 11:40 am
Luckywon wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 7:41 pm ...
Have you considered naming a "Trust Protector" who has powers to appoint and replace a corporate trustee and/or fiduciary? ...
If you trust that person, you could name him/her as trustee.

bsteiner many thanks for your comment in response to mine. For myself there are more people I know who might be willing and able to serve in the role of trust protector rather than as trustee. I would be very interested to know what you think of the strategy of naming a trust protector and giving that person power to appoint a successor corporate trustee (in the event of my incapacity) rather than naming corporate trustees outright. The reason I ask is that it seems to me the details of my trust, and the particular requirements and features of each corporate trustee at that time, would be known and it would be more practical to identify a suitable corporate trustee at that time.
inbox788
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by inbox788 »

bsteiner wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 11:40 amDo any other states have this besides California?
Good question. Don't know, but here's a firm in Arizona that specializes case management and fiduciary. I'm guessing most of the work for these types of companies is court appointed. And I'm guessing most of the folks doing this type of work go by other titles.
Who is a Case Manager?
A Case Manager is a health and human services specialist who acts as a guide and advocate for persons who care for elderly or disabled family members or loved ones. Case Managers are educated and experienced in any of several fields related to care management. These include nursing, gerontology, social work, or psychology, with a specialized focus on issues related to special needs care, aging and elder care.

Case Managers help clients to attain their maximum functional potential. Individual’s independence is encouraged, while assessing their safety and security concerns. Case Managers address a broad range of issues related to their clients’ well-being. They have extensive knowledge of costs, quality, and availability of resources for their clients.

What is a Private Fiduciary?
A private fiduciary is a non-family member who is certified by the Arizona Supreme Court Fiduciary Certification Program to serve clients professionally, for a fee. A private fiduciary may be appointed by the court to serve as guardian, conservator or personal representative of an estate if the fiduciary is not a beneficiary of that estate. Private fiduciaries may also serve, by agreement, as trustees, representative payees, or as agents under powers of attorney.
https://www.sterlingcasemanagement.com/ ... questions/
goaties wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 12:06 pm My childless aunt found someone at her senior center to perform the very tasks I believe the OP is asking about. I have no idea of the specifics, but that might be a good place to start asking questions.

There is a huge entrepreneurial opportunity here. The number of childless/niece-less/nephew-less elders is growing!
You might think so, but there's not a whole lot of people lining up to pay a fee to meet like OP. You'd have an easier time holding free dinner seminars and selling financial, insurance or legal services.
Trurl Klapaucius
Posts: 55
Joined: Tue Aug 06, 2013 1:11 pm

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Trurl Klapaucius »

GerryL,

Like you, I am a “solo ager” struggling with estate planning issues. In particular, I am wondering who will take care of my personal and financial affairs if I become incapacitated. Addressing this issue now, while I am capable, seems better than ignoring it; and letting the courts appoint a guardian/conservator who I may not know or like.

I have little advice to offer, other than the following:

First of all, give yourself a break: Don’t hold yourself to a standard of absolute perfection in this endeavor. Anyone you chose as a fiduciary, whether a person or a corporation, might change or otherwise prove to be a bad choice; regardless of their credentials, lineage, or history. Nothing comes with an eternal guarantee. Make the best choices you can now, and keep an eye on them while you are able. Practically speaking, this might mean choosing someone who you know isn’t very good, if they are the best you have found so far.

Secondly, do your best to avoid Kahneman/Tversky cognitive biases. For example, because you desperately want to find someone who will function as you wish, you are more likely to falsely believe that someone is the person you are looking for, even though they really are not that person. Also, just because you have chosen someone, don’t feel that you should stick with them when there is evidence to the contrary. In this regard, I suggest that you forget about the professional fiduciary who stood you up, even though they were previously high on your list.

Finally, as I recall, in her book Essential Retirement Planning for Solo Agers, Sara Zeff Geber recommended taking measures to not be alone, such as making younger friends, joining a community, etc. Then assemble a team as best you can to step in when needed, and have lots of checks and balances to prevent any one bad egg from ruining everything. I’m not sure how practical this is, but it is good to keep in mind. A well-meaning friend might prove way more important to you than a highly respected professional, if you need help tying your shoes.

I wish I had better advice to offer you (and myself). Good luck, and please let us know if you have any breakthroughs.
bsteiner
Posts: 5145
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2012 9:39 pm
Location: NYC/NJ/FL

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by bsteiner »

Luckywon wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 12:54 pm
bsteiner wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 11:40 am
Luckywon wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 7:41 pm ...
Have you considered naming a "Trust Protector" who has powers to appoint and replace a corporate trustee and/or fiduciary? ...
If you trust that person, you could name him/her as trustee.

bsteiner many thanks for your comment in response to mine. For myself there are more people I know who might be willing and able to serve in the role of trust protector rather than as trustee. I would be very interested to know what you think of the strategy of naming a trust protector and giving that person power to appoint a successor corporate trustee (in the event of my incapacity) rather than naming corporate trustees outright. The reason I ask is that it seems to me the details of my trust, and the particular requirements and features of each corporate trustee at that time, would be known and it would be more practical to identify a suitable corporate trustee at that time.
That might work. Someone has to decide when you're no longer able to handle your affairs.

You don't need to call the person a protector.

You would have to consider what would happen if that person thought you were no longer able to handle your affairs but you disagreed and thought you were still able to handle your affairs. You would need to build in a procedure to deal with that possibility.
Luckywon
Posts: 1078
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2017 10:33 am

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Luckywon »

bsteiner wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 2:08 pm

You don't need to call the person a protector.

You would have to consider what would happen if that person thought you were no longer able to handle your affairs but you disagreed and thought you were still able to handle your affairs. You would need to build in a procedure to deal with that possibility.
Thank you, I give that some very careful thought. Are there other terms you might use for such a person other than trust protector?
visualguy
Posts: 2088
Joined: Thu Jan 30, 2014 1:32 am

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by visualguy »

bsteiner wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 2:08 pm
Luckywon wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 12:54 pm
bsteiner wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 11:40 am
Luckywon wrote: Tue Feb 18, 2020 7:41 pm ...
Have you considered naming a "Trust Protector" who has powers to appoint and replace a corporate trustee and/or fiduciary? ...
If you trust that person, you could name him/her as trustee.

bsteiner many thanks for your comment in response to mine. For myself there are more people I know who might be willing and able to serve in the role of trust protector rather than as trustee. I would be very interested to know what you think of the strategy of naming a trust protector and giving that person power to appoint a successor corporate trustee (in the event of my incapacity) rather than naming corporate trustees outright. The reason I ask is that it seems to me the details of my trust, and the particular requirements and features of each corporate trustee at that time, would be known and it would be more practical to identify a suitable corporate trustee at that time.
That might work. Someone has to decide when you're no longer able to handle your affairs.

You don't need to call the person a protector.

You would have to consider what would happen if that person thought you were no longer able to handle your affairs but you disagreed and thought you were still able to handle your affairs. You would need to build in a procedure to deal with that possibility.
Such a conflict is almost guaranteed in the case of dementia, unfortunately.

I find solo aging to be similar to reaching retirement without resources. The only good approach is not to end up in that situation. In other words, it's a situation that needs to be avoided by putting your life on a different course much earlier, so that you don't get there (not always possible, but rarely impossible).

It's one of those things that young people don't think about (unlike retirement savings which they do think about)... I only realized how big of a problem this situation can be when seeing the large amount of family effort that was needed to deal with taking care of my aging parents, including my mom in a nursing home with dementia.
GmanJeff
Posts: 659
Joined: Sun Jun 11, 2017 7:12 am

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by GmanJeff »

Consider a discussion around this with the social workers at Continuing Care Retirement Communities in your area, where these kinds of issues do arise. Residents in Independent Living sometimes have no local family, or no family at all, and may eventually need administrative support of varying levels of complexity, particularly in the aftermath of a medical emergency. Ask how those kinds of challenges are addressed by residents who have such needs, and you'll likely be given referrals to companies which have proven helpful to residents in the past.
bsteiner
Posts: 5145
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2012 9:39 pm
Location: NYC/NJ/FL

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by bsteiner »

Luckywon wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 2:19 pm
bsteiner wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 2:08 pm

You don't need to call the person a protector.

You would have to consider what would happen if that person thought you were no longer able to handle your affairs but you disagreed and thought you were still able to handle your affairs. You would need to build in a procedure to deal with that possibility.
Thank you, I give that some very careful thought. Are there other terms you might use for such a person other than trust protector?
You can use any title you want, or no title at all. Just set forth the ground rules.
visualguy wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 2:49 pm
bsteiner wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 2:08 pm ...
You would have to consider what would happen if that person thought you were no longer able to handle your affairs but you disagreed and thought you were still able to handle your affairs. You would need to build in a procedure to deal with that possibility.
Such a conflict is almost guaranteed in the case of dementia, unfortunately.
...
There's no easy answer to that. That was the subject of a dispute involving Donald Sterling and the Los Angeles Clippers basketball team a few years ago: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donald_Sterling.
User avatar
Topic Author
GerryL
Posts: 2874
Joined: Fri Sep 20, 2013 11:40 pm

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by GerryL »

Thanks Everyone for this discussion. An update.
Ms No-Show has made no contact. As far as I'm concerned, that door has closed.
Yesterday I heard back from one of the PF businesses I recently contacted, and after a brief discussion set up a face-to-face meeting for when I return from an upcoming trip. (Tomorrow I am meeting with another, so I'll be able to meet two before deciding to select one, or neither.)

Some clarification:
I am looking for a PF that offers both financial oversight and guardianship-type services and who is willing to be part of a team with my physically distant nephew and some local friends.
I am not interested in "wealth management." One of the vetting questions for PFs is, "What is your succession plan?"

I have come up with the following model, which I call Dead or Daily.
I put my nephew down as successor trustee and the PF as alternate successor trustee.
If I die without becoming incapacitated, my nephew may decide to take on the trustee role.
If I do become incapacitated (gradually or suddenly) my nephew can decide whether he is up for it and, if not, cede the role to the alternate while still being part of my "team."
Successor trustees and alternates can be changed at any time while I am still acting as my own trustee. My trust documents can include information about my wishes about how my finances and living situation are handled and when the other "team members" need to be consulted -- within reason.
I expect to pay a fee for annual check-ins with my chosen PF.
And, yes, I have discussed this model with the interested parties.

With luck I will have a long, healthy life in front of me and may need to adjust my plans over time. It would be much easier to ignore this complex problem, but I promised myself I would be more responsible than that.

A thought from the book Essential Retirement Planning for Solo Agers: "The truth is, we're all Solo Agers if we live long enough."
User avatar
Topic Author
GerryL
Posts: 2874
Joined: Fri Sep 20, 2013 11:40 pm

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by GerryL »

Trurl Klapaucius wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 1:35 pm GerryL,

Like you, I am a “solo ager” struggling with estate planning issues. In particular, I am wondering who will take care of my personal and financial affairs if I become incapacitated. Addressing this issue now, while I am capable, seems better than ignoring it; and letting the courts appoint a guardian/conservator who I may not know or like.

I have little advice to offer, other than the following:

First of all, give yourself a break: Don’t hold yourself to a standard of absolute perfection in this endeavor. Anyone you chose as a fiduciary, whether a person or a corporation, might change or otherwise prove to be a bad choice; regardless of their credentials, lineage, or history. Nothing comes with an eternal guarantee. Make the best choices you can now, and keep an eye on them while you are able. Practically speaking, this might mean choosing someone who you know isn’t very good, if they are the best you have found so far.

Secondly, do your best to avoid Kahneman/Tversky cognitive biases. For example, because you desperately want to find someone who will function as you wish, you are more likely to falsely believe that someone is the person you are looking for, even though they really are not that person. Also, just because you have chosen someone, don’t feel that you should stick with them when there is evidence to the contrary. In this regard, I suggest that you forget about the professional fiduciary who stood you up, even though they were previously high on your list.

Finally, as I recall, in her book Essential Retirement Planning for Solo Agers, Sara Zeff Geber recommended taking measures to not be alone, such as making younger friends, joining a community, etc. Then assemble a team as best you can to step in when needed, and have lots of checks and balances to prevent any one bad egg from ruining everything. I’m not sure how practical this is, but it is good to keep in mind. A well-meaning friend might prove way more important to you than a highly respected professional, if you need help tying your shoes.

I wish I had better advice to offer you (and myself). Good luck, and please let us know if you have any breakthroughs.
Thanks, Trurl, for your thought from another Solo Ager.
I believe I have been addressing your three categories of advice. We Solo Agers have to share our knowledge and experiences.
BTW, I have been active in Village Movement and belong to a virtual village in my town. A great way to make new friends and to have people to count on for "neighborly" tasks. A group of Solo Agers is trying to get the village to be more cognizant that our needs are not always the same as those of people who imagine they will always be "coupled."
visualguy
Posts: 2088
Joined: Thu Jan 30, 2014 1:32 am

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by visualguy »

GerryL wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 5:51 pm Thanks Everyone for this discussion. An update.
Ms No-Show has made no contact. As far as I'm concerned, that door has closed.
Yesterday I heard back from one of the PF businesses I recently contacted, and after a brief discussion set up a face-to-face meeting for when I return from an upcoming trip. (Tomorrow I am meeting with another, so I'll be able to meet two before deciding to select one, or neither.)

Some clarification:
I am looking for a PF that offers both financial oversight and guardianship-type services and who is willing to be part of a team with my physically distant nephew and some local friends.
I am not interested in "wealth management." One of the vetting questions for PFs is, "What is your succession plan?"

I have come up with the following model, which I call Dead or Daily.
I put my nephew down as successor trustee and the PF as alternate successor trustee.
If I die without becoming incapacitated, my nephew may decide to take on the trustee role.
If I do become incapacitated (gradually or suddenly) my nephew can decide whether he is up for it and, if not, cede the role to the alternate while still being part of my "team."
Successor trustees and alternates can be changed at any time while I am still acting as my own trustee. My trust documents can include information about my wishes about how my finances and living situation are handled and when the other "team members" need to be consulted -- within reason.
I expect to pay a fee for annual check-ins with my chosen PF.
And, yes, I have discussed this model with the interested parties.

With luck I will have a long, healthy life in front of me and may need to adjust my plans over time. It would be much easier to ignore this complex problem, but I promised myself I would be more responsible than that.

A thought from the book Essential Retirement Planning for Solo Agers: "The truth is, we're all Solo Agers if we live long enough."
Since you have a nephew who is willing to help, I wouldn't really call you a "solo" ager, and that's good, of course! The big problem is when you have no family, or none that's willing to be involved. Even having one family member who is willing to help completely changes the situation for the better.
Bobby206
Posts: 480
Joined: Fri Oct 05, 2018 4:01 pm

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Bobby206 »

bsteiner wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 11:40 am
Bobby206 wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 10:44 am ...
A PFAC serves those exact roles and is perfect for people that don't have trusted family members. I have seen PFACs visiting their clients in nursing homes, filing complaints regarding nursing home conditions, and paying bills. They do it all. They key, in my opinion, is finding someone licensed, bondable, etc... as is available in California and I assume other states too.
Do any other states have this besides California?
That's a good question bsteiner. If not, someone should start working on duplicating what we have in California in other states. It's a HUGE growth business right now. Pfac-pro.org has a list of the California licensed pfacs and other info about the industry. They have to pass state test, state background check, do MCLE, be bondable (often waived however), etc.... Some lean more financial, some are great bookkeepers, and some lean more toward a social worker. Some are a nice combo of all things. We are also seeing some groups forming where they get huge and have in-house property management, social worker, etc.... If I were starting a career now I would go into this. Really huge growth potential with so many family members stealing from mom/dad the use of PFACs becomes more and more desired. In my opinion they are better than banks at giving personal attention. However, banks are probably better at the asset management side... at least the stocks/bonds side. I have seen a bank trustee really screw up real estate.
Luckywon
Posts: 1078
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2017 10:33 am

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Luckywon »

Bobby206 wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 9:20 pm
bsteiner wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 11:40 am
Bobby206 wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 10:44 am ...
A PFAC serves those exact roles and is perfect for people that don't have trusted family members. I have seen PFACs visiting their clients in nursing homes, filing complaints regarding nursing home conditions, and paying bills. They do it all. They key, in my opinion, is finding someone licensed, bondable, etc... as is available in California and I assume other states too.
Do any other states have this besides California?
That's a good question bsteiner. If not, someone should start working on duplicating what we have in California in other states. It's a HUGE growth business right now. Pfac-pro.org has a list of the California licensed pfacs and other info about the industry. They have to pass state test, state background check, do MCLE, be bondable (often waived however), etc.... Some lean more financial, some are great bookkeepers, and some lean more toward a social worker. Some are a nice combo of all things. We are also seeing some groups forming where they get huge and have in-house property management, social worker, etc.... If I were starting a career now I would go into this. Really huge growth potential with so many family members stealing from mom/dad the use of PFACs becomes more and more desired. In my opinion they are better than banks at giving personal attention. However, banks are probably better at the asset management side... at least the stocks/bonds side. I have seen a bank trustee really screw up real estate.
I am in California and spoke to a couple of professional fiduciaries. One charges $200/hour and the other $180/hour. I'm sure it's quite easy to run up a large bill very quickly, especially if wellness visits need to be made. I agree with you, this seems to be a great career with huge growth potential.
visualguy
Posts: 2088
Joined: Thu Jan 30, 2014 1:32 am

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by visualguy »

Bobby206 wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 9:20 pm That's a good question bsteiner. If not, someone should start working on duplicating what we have in California in other states. It's a HUGE growth business right now. Pfac-pro.org has a list of the California licensed pfacs and other info about the industry. They have to pass state test, state background check, do MCLE, be bondable (often waived however), etc.... Some lean more financial, some are great bookkeepers, and some lean more toward a social worker. Some are a nice combo of all things. We are also seeing some groups forming where they get huge and have in-house property management, social worker, etc.... If I were starting a career now I would go into this. Really huge growth potential with so many family members stealing from mom/dad the use of PFACs becomes more and more desired. In my opinion they are better than banks at giving personal attention. However, banks are probably better at the asset management side... at least the stocks/bonds side. I have seen a bank trustee really screw up real estate.
Is there regular auditing done on what they do? If they find out you have no family or anyone else supervising them, what would prevent them from just stealing your assets when you're incapacitated with dementia or some other disease?
Luckywon
Posts: 1078
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2017 10:33 am

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Luckywon »

GerryL wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 5:51 pm Thanks Everyone for this discussion. An update.
Ms No-Show has made no contact. As far as I'm concerned, that door has closed.
Yesterday I heard back from one of the PF businesses I recently contacted, and after a brief discussion set up a face-to-face meeting for when I return from an upcoming trip. (Tomorrow I am meeting with another, so I'll be able to meet two before deciding to select one, or neither.)

Some clarification:
I am looking for a PF that offers both financial oversight and guardianship-type services and who is willing to be part of a team with my physically distant nephew and some local friends.
I am not interested in "wealth management." One of the vetting questions for PFs is, "What is your succession plan?"

I have come up with the following model, which I call Dead or Daily.
I put my nephew down as successor trustee and the PF as alternate successor trustee.
If I die without becoming incapacitated, my nephew may decide to take on the trustee role.
If I do become incapacitated (gradually or suddenly) my nephew can decide whether he is up for it and, if not, cede the role to the alternate while still being part of my "team."
Successor trustees and alternates can be changed at any time while I am still acting as my own trustee. My trust documents can include information about my wishes about how my finances and living situation are handled and when the other "team members" need to be consulted -- within reason.
I expect to pay a fee for annual check-ins with my chosen PF.
And, yes, I have discussed this model with the interested parties.

With luck I will have a long, healthy life in front of me and may need to adjust my plans over time. It would be much easier to ignore this complex problem, but I promised myself I would be more responsible than that.

A thought from the book Essential Retirement Planning for Solo Agers: "The truth is, we're all Solo Agers if we live long enough."
Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this topic which we are trying to figure out too, as we have no children or other close relatives nearby. May I ask whether you have significant funds in retirement accounts and if so, how does your plan handle access to those as they would presumably not be in your trust if you were alive but incapacitated?
Luckywon
Posts: 1078
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2017 10:33 am

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Luckywon »

GerryL wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 5:51 pm Thanks Everyone for this discussion. An update.
Ms No-Show has made no contact. As far as I'm concerned, that door has closed.
Yesterday I heard back from one of the PF businesses I recently contacted, and after a brief discussion set up a face-to-face meeting for when I return from an upcoming trip. (Tomorrow I am meeting with another, so I'll be able to meet two before deciding to select one, or neither.)
If you'd be comfortable sharing what the fees are like for the PF's you interview, would appreciate that.
Bobby206
Posts: 480
Joined: Fri Oct 05, 2018 4:01 pm

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Bobby206 »

Luckywon wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 10:11 pm
Bobby206 wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 9:20 pm
bsteiner wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 11:40 am
Bobby206 wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 10:44 am ...
A PFAC serves those exact roles and is perfect for people that don't have trusted family members. I have seen PFACs visiting their clients in nursing homes, filing complaints regarding nursing home conditions, and paying bills. They do it all. They key, in my opinion, is finding someone licensed, bondable, etc... as is available in California and I assume other states too.
Do any other states have this besides California?
That's a good question bsteiner. If not, someone should start working on duplicating what we have in California in other states. It's a HUGE growth business right now. Pfac-pro.org has a list of the California licensed pfacs and other info about the industry. They have to pass state test, state background check, do MCLE, be bondable (often waived however), etc.... Some lean more financial, some are great bookkeepers, and some lean more toward a social worker. Some are a nice combo of all things. We are also seeing some groups forming where they get huge and have in-house property management, social worker, etc.... If I were starting a career now I would go into this. Really huge growth potential with so many family members stealing from mom/dad the use of PFACs becomes more and more desired. In my opinion they are better than banks at giving personal attention. However, banks are probably better at the asset management side... at least the stocks/bonds side. I have seen a bank trustee really screw up real estate.
I am in California and spoke to a couple of professional fiduciaries. One charges $200/hour and the other $180/hour. I'm sure it's quite easy to run up a large bill very quickly, especially if wellness visits need to be made. I agree with you, this seems to be a great career with huge growth potential.
Get out of the big city. $100/hr in Sac, Fresno, Bakersfield. Call someone up there and just work remotely. You don't need to go to their office.
Bobby206
Posts: 480
Joined: Fri Oct 05, 2018 4:01 pm

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Bobby206 »

visualguy wrote: Thu Feb 20, 2020 1:16 am
Bobby206 wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 9:20 pm That's a good question bsteiner. If not, someone should start working on duplicating what we have in California in other states. It's a HUGE growth business right now. Pfac-pro.org has a list of the California licensed pfacs and other info about the industry. They have to pass state test, state background check, do MCLE, be bondable (often waived however), etc.... Some lean more financial, some are great bookkeepers, and some lean more toward a social worker. Some are a nice combo of all things. We are also seeing some groups forming where they get huge and have in-house property management, social worker, etc.... If I were starting a career now I would go into this. Really huge growth potential with so many family members stealing from mom/dad the use of PFACs becomes more and more desired. In my opinion they are better than banks at giving personal attention. However, banks are probably better at the asset management side... at least the stocks/bonds side. I have seen a bank trustee really screw up real estate.
Is there regular auditing done on what they do? If they find out you have no family or anyone else supervising them, what would prevent them from just stealing your assets when you're incapacitated with dementia or some other disease?
You can have them be bonded and you can require accountings to be done annually. No problem.
clip651
Posts: 749
Joined: Thu Oct 02, 2014 11:02 am

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by clip651 »

Bobby206 wrote: Thu Feb 20, 2020 9:27 pm
visualguy wrote: Thu Feb 20, 2020 1:16 am
Bobby206 wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 9:20 pm That's a good question bsteiner. If not, someone should start working on duplicating what we have in California in other states. It's a HUGE growth business right now. Pfac-pro.org has a list of the California licensed pfacs and other info about the industry. They have to pass state test, state background check, do MCLE, be bondable (often waived however), etc.... Some lean more financial, some are great bookkeepers, and some lean more toward a social worker. Some are a nice combo of all things. We are also seeing some groups forming where they get huge and have in-house property management, social worker, etc.... If I were starting a career now I would go into this. Really huge growth potential with so many family members stealing from mom/dad the use of PFACs becomes more and more desired. In my opinion they are better than banks at giving personal attention. However, banks are probably better at the asset management side... at least the stocks/bonds side. I have seen a bank trustee really screw up real estate.
Is there regular auditing done on what they do? If they find out you have no family or anyone else supervising them, what would prevent them from just stealing your assets when you're incapacitated with dementia or some other disease?
You can have them be bonded and you can require accountings to be done annually. No problem.
But who are they giving those annual accountings to, if someone is truly solo (no spouse, no living and competent, caring relatives, etc)? Who would be supervising the paid fiduciary, if the person who hired them was no longer capable (dementia or whatever)?
Luckywon
Posts: 1078
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2017 10:33 am

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Luckywon »

clip651 wrote: Thu Feb 20, 2020 9:48 pm
Bobby206 wrote: Thu Feb 20, 2020 9:27 pm
visualguy wrote: Thu Feb 20, 2020 1:16 am
Bobby206 wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 9:20 pm That's a good question bsteiner. If not, someone should start working on duplicating what we have in California in other states. It's a HUGE growth business right now. Pfac-pro.org has a list of the California licensed pfacs and other info about the industry. They have to pass state test, state background check, do MCLE, be bondable (often waived however), etc.... Some lean more financial, some are great bookkeepers, and some lean more toward a social worker. Some are a nice combo of all things. We are also seeing some groups forming where they get huge and have in-house property management, social worker, etc.... If I were starting a career now I would go into this. Really huge growth potential with so many family members stealing from mom/dad the use of PFACs becomes more and more desired. In my opinion they are better than banks at giving personal attention. However, banks are probably better at the asset management side... at least the stocks/bonds side. I have seen a bank trustee really screw up real estate.
Is there regular auditing done on what they do? If they find out you have no family or anyone else supervising them, what would prevent them from just stealing your assets when you're incapacitated with dementia or some other disease?
You can have them be bonded and you can require accountings to be done annually. No problem.
But who are they giving those annual accountings to, if someone is truly solo (no spouse, no living and competent, caring relatives, etc)? Who would be supervising the paid fiduciary, if the person who hired them was no longer capable (dementia or whatever)?
Even if there was someone the fiduciary was reporting to, there would be great temptation and opportunity to bill for large amounts of time, given the nature of the services being performed.
Luckywon
Posts: 1078
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2017 10:33 am

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by Luckywon »

Bobby206 wrote: Thu Feb 20, 2020 9:26 pm
Luckywon wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 10:11 pm
Bobby206 wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 9:20 pm
bsteiner wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 11:40 am
Bobby206 wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 10:44 am ...
A PFAC serves those exact roles and is perfect for people that don't have trusted family members. I have seen PFACs visiting their clients in nursing homes, filing complaints regarding nursing home conditions, and paying bills. They do it all. They key, in my opinion, is finding someone licensed, bondable, etc... as is available in California and I assume other states too.
Do any other states have this besides California?
That's a good question bsteiner. If not, someone should start working on duplicating what we have in California in other states. It's a HUGE growth business right now. Pfac-pro.org has a list of the California licensed pfacs and other info about the industry. They have to pass state test, state background check, do MCLE, be bondable (often waived however), etc.... Some lean more financial, some are great bookkeepers, and some lean more toward a social worker. Some are a nice combo of all things. We are also seeing some groups forming where they get huge and have in-house property management, social worker, etc.... If I were starting a career now I would go into this. Really huge growth potential with so many family members stealing from mom/dad the use of PFACs becomes more and more desired. In my opinion they are better than banks at giving personal attention. However, banks are probably better at the asset management side... at least the stocks/bonds side. I have seen a bank trustee really screw up real estate.
I am in California and spoke to a couple of professional fiduciaries. One charges $200/hour and the other $180/hour. I'm sure it's quite easy to run up a large bill very quickly, especially if wellness visits need to be made. I agree with you, this seems to be a great career with huge growth potential.
Get out of the big city. $100/hr in Sac, Fresno, Bakersfield. Call someone up there and just work remotely. You don't need to go to their office.
Yes, the problem is I am in a HCOL area. A remote fiduciary would not work for me-I am thinking of the situation where I would be relying on them to manage the details of my or my spouse's care. Wellness checks etc would be part of the job.
littlebird
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by littlebird »

inbox788 wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 1:14 pm
bsteiner wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 11:40 amDo any other states have this besides California?
Good question. Don't know, but here's a firm in Arizona that specializes case management and fiduciary. I'm guessing most of the work for these types of companies is court appointed. And I'm guessing most of the folks doing this type of work go by other titles.
I had the opportunity to observe (from across the street) an Arizona Licensed Fiduciary operate. I was fairly well impressed. She was recommended by the lawyer who drafted my neighbor’s will. My neighbor had no relatives in the country, and due to her late spouse’s irascible nature and paranoia, had no friends either. The fiduciary was intended to step in only at the neighbor’s death, and did so. She first came around to the neighbors, introducing herself, explaining what she would be doing at the house and leaving a card in case of any problems or questions.

She held a garage sale of such proportions that we were all trapped in our homes for two successive weekends. She then cleared out the house and contracted for some cosmetic repairs. She listed the house for sale and represented the estate at the sale. And, presumably, thereafter remitted the proceeds of the estate to the overseas relatives, although of course I have no firsthand knowledge of that step. I do not know, but possibly she would have taken over my neighbor’s affairs earlier, if my neighbor had needed that service.
visualguy
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by visualguy »

clip651 wrote: Thu Feb 20, 2020 9:48 pm
Bobby206 wrote: Thu Feb 20, 2020 9:27 pm
visualguy wrote: Thu Feb 20, 2020 1:16 am
Bobby206 wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 9:20 pm That's a good question bsteiner. If not, someone should start working on duplicating what we have in California in other states. It's a HUGE growth business right now. Pfac-pro.org has a list of the California licensed pfacs and other info about the industry. They have to pass state test, state background check, do MCLE, be bondable (often waived however), etc.... Some lean more financial, some are great bookkeepers, and some lean more toward a social worker. Some are a nice combo of all things. We are also seeing some groups forming where they get huge and have in-house property management, social worker, etc.... If I were starting a career now I would go into this. Really huge growth potential with so many family members stealing from mom/dad the use of PFACs becomes more and more desired. In my opinion they are better than banks at giving personal attention. However, banks are probably better at the asset management side... at least the stocks/bonds side. I have seen a bank trustee really screw up real estate.
Is there regular auditing done on what they do? If they find out you have no family or anyone else supervising them, what would prevent them from just stealing your assets when you're incapacitated with dementia or some other disease?
You can have them be bonded and you can require accountings to be done annually. No problem.
But who are they giving those annual accountings to, if someone is truly solo (no spouse, no living and competent, caring relatives, etc)? Who would be supervising the paid fiduciary, if the person who hired them was no longer capable (dementia or whatever)?
It seems that ultimately you do need a strong trusted person who cares enough to supervise, verify, and coordinate things. Otherwise, you are extremely vulnerable to fraud and financial abuse. There are many horror stories with fiduciaries if you look up this stuff on-line. Even when there's family that cares, there are some horrifying stories with court-appointed guardians where the family is left helpless. Without anyone who cares, I don't even want to imagine what happens. Reading about this is truly depressing - I don't recommend it!
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LilyFleur
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Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Post by LilyFleur »

Luckywon wrote: Thu Feb 20, 2020 9:57 pm
Bobby206 wrote: Thu Feb 20, 2020 9:26 pm
Luckywon wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 10:11 pm
Bobby206 wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 9:20 pm
bsteiner wrote: Wed Feb 19, 2020 11:40 am


Do any other states have this besides California?
That's a good question bsteiner. If not, someone should start working on duplicating what we have in California in other states. It's a HUGE growth business right now. Pfac-pro.org has a list of the California licensed pfacs and other info about the industry. They have to pass state test, state background check, do MCLE, be bondable (often waived however), etc.... Some lean more financial, some are great bookkeepers, and some lean more toward a social worker. Some are a nice combo of all things. We are also seeing some groups forming where they get huge and have in-house property management, social worker, etc.... If I were starting a career now I would go into this. Really huge growth potential with so many family members stealing from mom/dad the use of PFACs becomes more and more desired. In my opinion they are better than banks at giving personal attention. However, banks are probably better at the asset management side... at least the stocks/bonds side. I have seen a bank trustee really screw up real estate.
I am in California and spoke to a couple of professional fiduciaries. One charges $200/hour and the other $180/hour. I'm sure it's quite easy to run up a large bill very quickly, especially if wellness visits need to be made. I agree with you, this seems to be a great career with huge growth potential.
Get out of the big city. $100/hr in Sac, Fresno, Bakersfield. Call someone up there and just work remotely. You don't need to go to their office.
Yes, the problem is I am in a HCOL area. A remote fiduciary would not work for me-I am thinking of the situation where I would be relying on them to manage the details of my or my spouse's care. Wellness checks etc would be part of the job.
There are social workers specializing in geriatrics who will do wellness checks as well as assist with testing, doctor visits, hospitalizations, and moves. Medicare may provide some of this, but we hired a private-care social worker. She had medical research that was relevant that doctors were too busy to share with us.
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