Working with a Financial Professional: Tips for CPAs and Lawyers

Leo Maheras |

If you're a CPA or a lawyer, you have extensive personal knowledge about taxes or the legal system, but at the same time, you may be running your own firm and dealing with unique financial situations. To ensure you're increasing your investment and savings efforts, you may want to consult with a financial planner. Here are some tips to help you work with these professionals.

1. Don't Mix Business and Personal

In many cases, there are professional overlaps between CPAs, lawyers, and financial professionals, but ideally, you may want to avoid letting your personal and professional life overlap in this realm. To give you an example, imagine you're a CPA who regularly refers clients to a financial professional and in turn, that professional sends clients to your firm.

This type of relationship can be lucrative, but you may want to have this relationship with a financial professional who does not manage your personal portfolio. Then, you don't have to worry about any conflicts of interest.

2. Leverage Your Experience When Making Decisions

As a legal or tax professional, you have different knowledge and experience than a lot of other professionals, and sometimes, this information can give you an edge when you're making an investment decision. Don't be afraid to let your knowledge inform your decisions.

Also, keep in mind that although your financial professional may be extremely skilled in their arena, they may lack some pieces of information that you have. As a result, if they are advising you to make a certain decision but you see things from a different angle, talk with them about your concerns.

Remember, you go to a financial professional for help meeting your financial goals, but that doesn't mean that you have to stop using your own knowledge and experiences. By combining both of your efforts, you may end up making even better investment decisions than you or your financial professional could have made on your own.

3. Focus on Retirement Planning

Every professional needs to think about retirement. You don't want to earn a great salary during your working years, overspend throughout your career, and end up having nothing during your golden years. However, for accountants and CPAs, the need to plan for retirement is arguably even more important.

Depending on your situation, you may run your own firm which means that you can't just plug into a retirement plan from your employer. By extension, you need a financial professional who can help you be proactive about investing for retirement.

At the same time, you should also keep in mind that a professional issue such as a malpractice claim has the potential to derail your career or disrupt your earnings. To insulate yourself from that risk, you should also work with your financial professional to ensure you are well insured and ready to meet these financial challenges if they occur.

The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. To determine which investment(s) may be appropriate for you, consult your financial advisor prior to investing. All performance referenced is historical and is no guarantee of future results. All indices are unmanaged and cannot be invested into directly.
The information provided is not intended to be a substitute for specific individualized tax planning or legal advice. We suggest that you consult with a qualified tax or legal advisor.

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