BIONDO Perspectives

January 25th, 2017

Who Do You Trust?

By Jean Pavek

jean-0284-rtWhen the unexpected happens and you are temporarily unable to contact us or we become aware of suspicious activity in your account and are unable to contact you, who would you name as a “Trusted Contact?” Securities regulators are suggesting that investors name someone who can be contacted—or can contact us—if there is a concern.

The Trusted Contact would not be able to authorize any account activity, but would be a liaison between Biondo and a client. A proposed rule would allow firms to put a temporary hold on fund or securities disbursements based on a reasonable belief that financial exploitation exists. The Trusted Contact could be notified of the hold.

However, long-term concerns about travel, illness or disability require a Power of Attorney, a legal document drawn by an attorney. Depending on the authorizations included, a Power of Attorney does allow the named person to authorize transactions on your behalf. A Power of Attorney is preferable to putting someone else as a joint party on your account—even if it’s a child you’re adding.

Adding someone else’s name to your account exposes your assets to any problems that other person experiences: lawsuits, settlements or liens for example. A small fee to appoint a Power of Attorney is far preferable to the problems that can arise from a joint account.

The important question remains—“Who do you trust?” That is an easy question for some and torturous for others, but one that is important to resolve.

Please contact us to discuss naming either a Trusted Contact or a Power of Attorney.

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