How to find an advisor for international personal finance issues?
August 29, 2013 8:09 PM   Subscribe

How can I find a fee based financial adviser with expertise in international situations for personal banking, investing, retirement saving and tax planning? I am a Canadian expat, former UK resident, and immigrant to America (living in Chicago) and will have income and retirement savings coming from multiple countries and uncertainty about where I will ultimately end up. How can I find someone who can help me with my particular situation?
posted by srboisvert to Work & Money (4 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
 
First I would say that you want to be looking for *fee-only*, not fee-based. Fee-based financial advisors can charge both fees and commissions, defeating the purpose of trying to work with someone who doesn't charge commissions. Fee only planners can not charge commissions.

Online I would start looking at cfp.net and fpanet.org, though I unfortunately don't have any more specific recommendations for you. You could also ask at the bogleheads forum, it is primarily a diy forum but some people on there do work with professionals and may have a good recommendation in your area.
posted by matcha action at 8:46 PM on August 29, 2013


The big 4 accounting firms (Ernst & Young (E&Y); PwC; Deloitte; KPMG) will probably have an international tax specialty which may offer personal tax advice -- here's E&Y's offering as an example. The advantage of using a firm like that is, if you have a specialised situation, they can pull in resources from various jurisdictions to offer specific advice. The disadvantage is cost. Charge out rates can be very high, so this is really only worth doing if you have a pretty high net worth. It is also very possible that they'll be able to identify strategies for you that will minimise your tax costs, so there is that.
posted by apcmwh at 5:58 AM on August 30, 2013


Also, do you really need specialised tax advice or just information? Firms like E&Y publish some decent literature that is publicly available. Two of their publications may be helpful in your situation - keeping in mind that these are very high level, but may serve as good starting points:
Worldwide personal tax guide 2012-2013
International Estate and Inheritence tax guide
posted by apcmwh at 6:04 AM on August 30, 2013


Charge out rates can be very high, so this is really only worth doing if you have a pretty high net worth. It is also very possible that they'll be able to identify strategies for you that will minimise your tax costs, so there is that.

I couldn't even pay for these people's coffee. (I know because my Mom was a partner's executive assistant for about a decade). It's probably good advice for people who are really well off though.
posted by srboisvert at 6:05 AM on August 30, 2013


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