4 Tax and Financial Planning Tips to Share With Clients

Reassuring clients and easing their concerns



Uncertainty is a common theme these days. People worry about the future and face many personal finance questions. The AICPA Personal Financial Planning (PFP) Trends survey found that 80% of CPA financial planners said their clients had a higher stress level about their financial plan than normal. The CPAs surveyed reported that they spoke with their clients early in the COVID-19 pandemic and often. As a CPA financial planner, you play a key role in reassuring clients and easing their concerns. In this blog post, CPA financial planners and CPAs with the Personal Financial Specialist (PFS™) credential detail the top tips they are implementing with their clients now.    

Paula S. McMillan, CPA/PFS, CGMA, on retirement planning: Help your clients minimize the cumulative lifetime taxes they and potentially their heirs will pay. After all, taxes can erode a nest egg. You can review your clients’ financial plans and recommend they pay taxes during low tax years since this will result in lower taxes overall. They may wish to consider IRA withdrawals if they have cash flow concerns. Roth conversions could potentially be a good idea if your client’s beneficiaries are in the same or higher bracket. But be sure to remember charities won’t get the tax break that an individual would for a Roth IRA, so plan carefully. Now that the SECURE Act requires most beneficiaries to distribute the entire account within 10 years, both IRA withdrawals and Roth conversions could potentially help the next generation with tax planning.

Jennifer E. Birchett, CPA/PFS, on identity protection and credit reports:  As their trusted adviser, remind clients to stay alert so they can spot fraudulent activity. Encourage them to review their credit reports. They can request one free report per year from all the major credit bureaus. Once they’ve reviewed their credit reports and see that everything looks correct, they should consider freezing their credit. This will prevent someone from opening new credit in their name. They can always lift the freeze for a specific period if someone needs to run a credit check.

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Source: AICPA

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