Financial Planning Definitions​ & FAQs

Fiduciary

Advisors who act as fiduciaries are legally and ethically obligated to make recommendations in the best interest of the client. Advisors who have Series 65 and/or Series 66 securities licenses have the knowledge to act in the best interest of the client as a fiduciary.

Fiduciary is an ethical standard, it’s important to have someone you trust will act in this way and knows what the rules are. A fiduciary should act as if they were in their client’s situation and make discussions as they would for themselves.

CFP

Certified Financial Planner™ certification is the standard of excellence in financial planning. CFP® professionals meet rigorous education, training, and ethical standards, and are committed to serving their clients’ best interests today to prepare them for a more secure tomorrow

ChFC

The Chartered Financial Consultant designation program has the same core curriculum as the CFP designation, plus one additional elective courses that focus on various areas of personal financial planning.

Fee-based financial planning

The client pays for the financial planning services and may also receive additional compensation from the financial products the client purchases.

This can be a helpful future for clients who don’t have to rely on a third party to integrate other financial products like insurance and other investments vehicles

Because fee-based financial planners are able to sell additional products, they are able to present more options to a client beyond financial planning, budgeting and investments.

Fee-only financial planning

The client pays for the financial planning services and the advisor is not compensated for any financial products the client may use. Fee-only planners often charge additional fees for managing investments, building and monitoring financial plans and even for being on retainer for their clients. 

It may seem ideal to have someone who is unbiased and has no motive to sell you additional products, but often fee-only financial planners don’t have  experience with incorporating additional products like disability insurance, life insurance, and various options for retirement accounts in your financial plan.

Registered Investment Advisor

  • A registered investment advisor (RIA) manages your assets and sits on the buy-side of the investment field. They can create portfolios of stocks, bonds, and mutual funds to streamline asset allocation. 

Financial Planning Frequently Asked Questions

There is no fee for the initial consultation or even for the discovery phase of developing your plan. We want you to feel confident that your advisor is the right person to help you set and reach your goals. The initial meeting is for us to learn more about your unique financial situation and for you to learn more about what financial planning is like with Physicians Thrive. 

There is no fee during the discovery phase. After the discovery phase is completed and a plan has been developed for your specific needs, your advisor will present you with an agreement outlining the scope of your financial plan. You will not be charged until this agreement has been signed.

Here’s what you can expect as a part of the Physicians Thrive financial planning discovery process:

  • Evaluating if Physicians Thrive is the right fit for you and vice versa
  • Determining the your goals
  • Engaging in multiple meetings for the advisor  to learn about your s concerns and motives
  • Gaining an understanding of your expectations
  • Yes Physicians Thrive is a RIA and out advisor act a Investment Advisor Representatives (IARs)

Yes, Physicians Thive has a  fee based financial planning model. Our advisors charge a fee for developing and managing financial plans.

Advisors receive reimbursement from life and disability insurance sales but as a fiduciary they only  make recommendations based on the clients needs.

This works similarly to the way a physician is reimbursed by an insurance company for various procedures a patient may need.

Above all else, work with someone you trust. We recommend you work with a fiduciary. With the help of an advisor who functions as a fiduciary,  you get a transparent expert that is able and willing to explain their strategy with you on how they plan to invest your money. 

A good advisor will give you the opportunity to meet for no costs in an introductory or discovery meeting to understand if it’s a good fit for both parties. The initial conversation should be a two-way interview to help each party evaluate each other. Here are some questions to ask yourself and/or your advisor:

  • Are they qualified to provide the advice you’re looking for?
  • Do they have experience with clients in similar situations? 
  • Do they have the resources within their team to meet the needs of your situation?
  • Is there a value alignment between you and the advisor? 

Yes, all Physician Thrive advisors are fiduciaries.

Yes. Physicians Thrive has a dedicated team of tax professionals who understand the more complex financial situations many physicians find themselves in.

You should receive advice based on your specific goals and what is most important to you. A good advisor will not provide you a one-size-fits-all solution but will give you individualized strategies based on your exact situation.

The discovery portion of developing a plan usually takes 2-4 meetings to discuss your current situation and establish recommended strategies. When onboarding a new client, we typically will meet several times a month for 30 to 60 minutes.

Once your plan is put in place, it’s up to you how often you would like to meet. Our team recommends meeting with your advisor once a quarter at the minimum.

Each client schedule and needs are different, our team strives to communicate with each physician’s preferred amount and method (whether it’s over the phone, video call, text, or email). We understand that physicians have busy schedules, we’re available nights and weekends

For physicians needing tax planning services, we recommend meeting twice a year; 1) to file your taxes, and 2) to develop a tax plan before the new year before the first quarter (October 1). 

Start your financial planning + taxes guide today.

Strong financial plans should include strategies designed to minimize your tax liability and make sure you are not making any mistakes with your tax returns.

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