Posts by Charles Zimmerer

Wealth Management Attorney

Wealth Management Attorney in Miami, FL

You have worked hard your entire life. Now what?

Most people have worked hard their entire life for the possessions they have, but only a small percentage of the population rise to a high level financial security. For those who have, managing your wealth ensures that you and your family are financially stable, your children have money for college, your husband or wife is taken care of if something were to happen to you, and your future retirement will become a reality.

As a law firm with attorneys that were previously state prosecutors, our wealth management attorneys know that wealth is not acquired quickly. It is earned through hard work, which is why we pride ourselves on not just providing investment advice but personally assisting our clients with creating a comprehensive wealth management plan that will sustain your current level of wealth and acquire additional assets through calculated investment campaigns.

Assess the Present

When planning investment strategies, it is important that you have a clear understanding of your current financial situation. This includes an evaluation of all of your current assets and their respective performance. As wealth management attorneys, our approach is to personally assist you with a current assessment of your assets, because we know that this is an important step in accomplishing your long-term financial goals.   

Stocks

Some of the most volatile or risky investments include stocks of all kinds. During your assessment, you need to consider the past performance of the stocks you currently own, the position of the industries those stocks are located in, and the current political and regulatory climate of each industry. Moreover, categorize your stocks according to the level of risk associated with each stock.

Prefered Stock

Preferred stock carries numerous advantages over common stock and could easily be considered to have a minimal amount of risk due to the following factors:

  • Prefered stockholders are usually paid a fixed dividend.
  • Prefered stockholders are paid dividends before common stockholders.
  • Some preferred stock allows the holder to collect dividends in arrears, if a company is struggling and suspends dividend payments.
  • Some preferred stock allows stockholders to have preferential treatment with respect to investment recoupment, if the company is liquidated.

These factors make preferred stock an appealing safe investment with a minimal amount of risk, but preferred stock is only sold to a select amount of investors. Therefore, it is fairly uncommon investment.

Common Stock

Common stock is one the most widespread types investments, but it carries with it certain pros and cons. Common stock can yield high returns through both dividends and appreciation. However, common stocks sold by some companies and within some industries can be extremely volatile due to the current climate of the stock market. This volatility is also affected by the political landscape in the U.S. and around the world.  

Bonds

Bonds come in many forms. Check out this comprehensive piece on bond investing. Generally speaking, one of the most secure bonds are U.S. Treasury bonds. The reason being, treasury bonds are issued by the U.S. government, and it is generally assumed that the federal government will never be unable to pay its debts. Although all investments carry a certain degree of risk, treasury bonds are the closest thing to a riskless investment. Other bonds include corporate, municipal, and agency bonds.

Bonds can be an appealing investment, because their returns are fixed. From an assessment perspective, a bond’s rating is an important piece of information to have. An experienced wealth management attorney will use this rating to determine the assumed value in the present and in the future of any bonds you own, because ratings are issued on the basis of risk. Lower ratings are given to companies that have an increased risk of a defaulting on a debt. Therefore, careful consideration must be given to each bond type and its rating.

Real Estate

When purchased and used correctly, real estate can be a good short-term and long-term investment that can yield high short-term returns or consistent residual returns. However, as with most investments, good management is a key factor in successful real estate transactions. When assessing the value of your real estate, you need to consider your overall goals for each piece of property. Are you planning on purchasing and re-selling the property for a quick profit? Maybe you want to rent the property to a tenant for long-term residual income. In either situation, an accurate evaluation of your required return on investment and the perceived level of risk will help you determine the value of real estate investments currently in your portfolio and the evaluation of future investment opportunities.

Gold

Gold is one the oldest investments known to man. Gold will always hold a certain amount of value regardless of whether or not a company has gone out of business, a government collapses, or new government regulations are put in place, which is part of gold’s appeal as an investment. Although gold prices like other physical commodities can fluctuate, gold’s value consistency is one of the reasons why so many investors have a certain amount of money invested in gold.

Evaluating the Strength of Your Portfolio

A portfolio’s strength can be viewed through many different lenses such as returns, risks, and, one of the most important ways to evaluate a portfolio, diversity. The overall goal of wealth management for most people relies on a common premise, minimizing risks and maximizing returns. One of the most common ways to accomplish this goal is through diversification. Diversifying your portfolio can minimize the amount of overall risk expose you are exposed to.

Diversification

Diversifying a portfolio is accomplished by investing in multiple companies, industries, types of securities, and types of investments. For example, if you invested $4 in each of two companies, company A and B, suppose company A has a great quarter, and its stock price rises from $4 to $6. Company B has a bad quarter, and its stock price drops from $4 to $3. You as an investor have yielded an overall profit of %12.5 or $1.

I could have invested all of my $8 investment in company B, which would have left me with a 25% or 2$ loss, or I could have invested all of my money in company, which would have yielded a $4 profit. However, it is just as likely that the scenario could be reversed by company A having a bad quarter and company B having a good quarter. By investing in both companies the losses of one company are offset by the gains of another. Although you did not yield the highest return possible, you minimize your risk of incurring a overall loss. This simple example demonstrates the two fundamental goals of diversifying your investments, minimizing your risk and yielding consistent returns.

Mutual Funds

Mutual funds are a type of investment that demonstrate the benefits of diversifications. A mutual fund is comprised of a pool of investors that purchase hundreds of stocks or bonds in multiple types of industries. When you purchase shares of a mutual fund your are not purchasing stock but rather, a share of the fund itself. Shares of mutual funds generate returns through appreciation and capital gains disbursements, but due to the fund’s diverse portfolio, mutual fund shares tend to be less volatile than stocks and maintain a high level of liquidity.   

Plan for Future Success

Our team of wealth management attorneys will assist you with structuring your portfolio maximize the diversity of your investments. This includes evaluating your current investments, the performance of those investments, and their potential for future returns. Active management is the key to your future financial success, and in order to maximize your returns, our attorneys recommend a mixture of investments involving varying levels of risk, some of which you may not be aware of.  

Customizing Your Investment Strategy

Each time a client steps into our office to discuss investment strategies, we take the investor’s goals into account. Everyone is at a different stage in their life cycle, and due to this, each investment strategy is unique. If you are planning on retiring soon, you will most likely not want to consider investments that could be deemed high risk with the possibility of high returns and losses. A younger client might be willing to consider investing in high risk securities. However, both of these clients, regardless of age, require a wealth management strategy that is tailored to their needs and that takes their short-term and long-term goals into account.

Understanding How Your Investments are Taxed

As you invest successfully, it’s important that you obtain a wealth management attorney that understands the complexities of the tax system and how certain assets are taxed. In 2016, the IRS audited almost 1.1 million tax returns, and as a wealth management law firm that specializes in taxes, we have witnessed the financial consequences that a poor tax strategy can incur on an individual’s financial stability. So it is important that you consult with a with a professional that is knowledgeable about how each investment is taxed when considering new and existing investments. Our team of wealth management attorneys give our clients an additional sense of security, because they know that they are working not just with excellent investment professionals but also, tax experts.

*Authoritative sources:

small percentage

risky investments

Common stock

Bonds

Rating

value consistency

Diversification

1.1 million tax returns

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Wealth Management Lawyer in Miami | Miami Asset Planning Lawyer

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Wealth management law firm with attorneys specializing in portfolio evaluation, trading and selling securities, real asset management, and investment planning. Schedule a consultation today.  

    

Bitcoin Investment Thesis

Bitcoin Investment Thesis: The market price of Bitcoin may not reflect demand because of the backlog in opening accounts. I have been waiting for 2 months for an account at bitstamp (and many other exchanges). Bitmain has sold out in less than an hour. In any event, if you are not making your livelihood with Bitcoin, do not invest more than you are willing to lose.

Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Regulation Updates

The top ten questions you should ask before investing in #blockchain #bitcoin #ripple #ethereum #bitcoincash #cardano #stellar #litecoin #XEM #MIOTA #Dash #cruptocurrency #altcoin #darkcoin are:

1. Who exactly am I contracting with?

A major consideration is who are you contracting with. It is important to check their backgrounds by performing a google search of their names and the company’s name. It’s important to exercise professional skepticism based upon what you find as a result because some of the content could be sponsored. In such a case, it may not be independent. Many Initial Coin Offerings issue white papers as business plans. You should read the white paper to determine if a business plan exists. A final consideration is to ascertain where are they located. Are you contracting out of state or out of country?

2. Where is my money going and what will be it be used for?

Is my money going to be used to “cash out” others?

3. What specific rights come with my investment?

4. Are there financial statements?

If so, are they audited, and by whom?

5. Is there trading data?

If so, is there some way to verify it?

6. How, when, and at what cost can I sell my investment?

For example, do I have a right to give the token or coin back to the company or to receive a refund Can I resell the coin or token, and if so, are there any limitations on my ability to resell?

7. If a digital wallet is involved, what happens if I lose the key?

8. Are there substantial risks of theft or loss, including from hacking?

9. If a blockchain is used, is the blockchain open and public?

Has the code been published, and has there been an independent cybersecurity audit?

10. Has the offering been structured to comply with the securities laws and, if not, what implications will that have for the stability of the enterprise and the value of my investment?

What legal protections may or may not be available in the event of fraud, a hack, malware, or a downturn in business prospects? Who will be responsible for refunding my investment if something goes wrong?

The SEC’s full list is available at www.cjzfirm.com/bitcoin/ @ 11 DEC 2017 Update and at Jay Clayton’s Statement on Cryptocurrencies and Initial Coin Offerings SEC and Statement of Chairman Jay Clayton and Commissioners Kara M. Stein and Michael S. Piwowar on “NASAA Reminds Investors to Approach Cryptocurrencies, Initial Coin Offerings and Other Cryptocurrency-Related Investment Products with Caution” by NASAA

Links

NASAA’s Common Cryptocurrency Concerns

Some common concerns investors should consider before investing in any offering containing cryptocurrency include:
  • Cryptocurrency is subject to minimal regulatory oversight, susceptible to cybersecurity breaches or hacks, and there may be no recourse should the cryptocurrency disappear.
  • Cryptocurrency accounts are not insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), which insures bank deposits up to $250,000.
  • The high volatility of cryptocurrency investments makes them unsuitable for most investors, especially those investing for long-term goals or retirement.
  • Investors in cryptocurrency are highly reliant upon unregulated companies, including some that may lack appropriate internal controls and may be more susceptible to fraud and theft than regulated financial institutions.
  • Investors will have to rely upon the strength of their own computer security systems, as well as security systems provided by third parties, to protect purchased cryptocurrencies from theft.

Common Red Flags of Fraud

NASAA also reminds investors to keep watch for these common red flags of investment fraud:
  • “Guaranteed” high investment returns. There is no such thing as guaranteed investment returns, and there is no guarantee that the cryptocurrency will increase in value. Be wary of anyone who promises a high rate of return with little or no risk.
  • Unsolicited offers. An unsolicited sales pitch may be part of a fraudulent investment scheme. Cryptocurrency investment opportunities are promoted aggressively through social media. Be very wary of an unsolicited communication—meaning you didn’t ask for it and don’t know the sender—about an investment opportunity.
  • Sounds too good to be true. If the project sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Watch out for exaggerated claims about the project’s future success.
  • Pressure to buy immediately. Take time to research an investment opportunity before handing over your money. Watch out for pressure to act fast or “get in on the ground floor” of a new tech trend.
  • Unlicensed sellers. Many fraudulent investment schemes involve unlicensed individuals or unregistered firms. Check license and registration status with your state or provincial securities regulator. Contact information is available here.

SEC’s Sample Questions for Investors Considering a Cryptocurrency or ICO
Investment Opportunity

  • Who exactly am I contracting with?
    • Who is issuing and sponsoring the product, what are their backgrounds, and have they provided a full and complete description of the product?  Do they have a clear written business plan that I understand?
    • Who is promoting or marketing the product, what are their backgrounds, and are they licensed to sell the product?  Have they been paid to promote the product?
    • Where is the enterprise located?
  • Where is my money going and what will be it be used for?  Is my money going to be used to “cash out” others?
  • What specific rights come with my investment?
  • Are there financial statements?  If so, are they audited, and by whom?
  • Is there trading data?  If so, is there some way to verify it?
  • How, when, and at what cost can I sell my investment?  For example, do I have a right to give the token or coin back to the company or to receive a refund?  Can I resell the coin or token, and if so, are there any limitations on my ability to resell?
  • If a digital wallet is involved, what happens if I lose the key?  Will I still have access to my investment?
  • If a blockchain is used, is the blockchain open and public?  Has the code been published, and has there been an independent cybersecurity audit?
  • Has the offering been structured to comply with the securities laws and, if not, what implications will that have for the stability of the enterprise and the value of my investment?
  • What legal protections may or may not be available in the event of fraud, a hack, malware, or a downturn in business prospects?  Who will be responsible for refunding my investment if something goes wrong?
  • If I do have legal rights, can I effectively enforce them and will there be adequate funds to compensate me if my rights are violated?

 

#blockchain #bitcoin #ripple #ethereum #bitcoincash #cardano #stellar #litecoin #XEM #MIOTA #Dash #cruptocurrency #altcoin #darkcoin 

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