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Clients’ Tax Woes Demand Straight Talk on Expertise

By Crucial Clips     August 25, 2014
The following text is a transcript of a portion of a speaker's presentation made at an industry conference or during an interview. This transcript solely represents the view of the individual who spoke, and not the view of Financial Advisor IQ or any other group.
Source: FA-IQ, Aug. 15, 2014 

Chris Latham

Reporter

Financial Advisor IQ

Pete Lang

President

Lang Capital

Chris Latham

“This is Chris Latham with Financial Advisor IQ. I’m speaking with Pete Lang, President of Lang Capital, which has offices in the Carolinas.

“Hi, Pete, thanks for coming.”

Pete Lang

"Chris, thanks for having us.”

Chris Latham

"Now, Pete, in addition to being a financial advisor, you have a background in tax law as an attorney, as well as an accountant. That must help you when it comes to dealing with advisory clients who have tax-related issues.”

Pete Lang

"Absolutely, and I think all people who are seeking advice really need to have some kind of tax planning advice and my background really does help my client base, because we’re really offering that future, forward-looking tax planning advice.”

Chris Latham

"Now, can a financial advisor without that background offer a similar level of guidance?”

Pete Lang

"Absolutely. When you look at most advisors, especially with a Series 7, you’re going to see typically a limited scope or a limited engagement. They’re going to focus mostly on investments. But what’s happening now is a transition from Series 7 over to Series 65 and the Series 65 investment advisors are putting together groups, they’re offering more than just investment advisory services. They’re integrating some tax planning services, also some income planning services. So, very, very important for advisors to start providing these types of services for potential clients.”

Chris Latham

"Now, I would assume that you also deal with clients’ individual accountants from time to time. Do you ever notice that the accountant has maybe missed something or didn’t tell the client something that you thought was important?”

Pete Lang

"I can tell you this. Accountants are typically spot-on for what they’re paid to do. But that’s a myth or a misconception that typically will enter into a scenario. For example, a client will come to us and said, Why didn’t my accountant tell me about this tax-planning device? And my question the client is, Did you really pay the accountant for that? As we know, most accountants are paid to file a tax return. And which direction are they looking, Chris? They’re looking backwards. When we talk about tax planning, we really want to focus on forward-looking transactions. So, how can we plan for the future? And, if you’re willing to pay your tax accountant for forward-looking advice, I’m sure they would be glad to offer those services.”

Chris Latham

"Thank you, Pete, I appreciate it.”

Pete Lang

"Thank you for having us.”