Being Prepared for DOMA Ruling


Last week CNBC covered the upcoming Supreme Court DOMA decision and suggested steps the LGBT community should take in preparation.  The segment endorsed the services of Wells Fargo’s LGBT Financial Planning Advisor division.  We at BCC were fortunate to have Steven Schmitt, co-founder of the division, speak to us at the L’Chayim Legacy Circle (LLC) Member Appreciation Brunch in December and the LGBT Financial Planning Seminar in February.

The CNBC segment is relevant to BCC’s upcoming Awards Brunch on June 2nd where David Codell, “one of the foremost legal minds of his generation,” will be honored with the Herman Humanitarian Award.  David is a civil rights litigator, constitutional expert, and groundbreaking advocate for LGBT rights and marriage equality.

Hope to see you there!

Being Financially Prepared for DOMA Ruling (By: Kelley Holland / April 23, 2013)

100661354-gay-couple-on-cake-gettyp.240x160Ready for DOMA’s demise?

Speculation is rife that the Defense of Marriage Act, popularly known as DOMA, will be struck down by the Supreme Court before the end of their current term and rule on the case by June or July. If that happens, it will mean a host of changes in tax laws, retirement benefits, and more for same-sex couples.

That’s why financial planners working with same-sex couples —- not to mention the couples themselves —- have their pencils sharpened.

“Are clients asking about this? You bet,” says Kyle Young, a first vice president and certified financial planner at Wells Fargo Advisors, the financial-advisory arm ofWells Fargo. The practice Young co-manages is focused on LGBT clients, and he says it’s the largest such practice within Wells Fargo.

“Every day or every other day I get a call” about posible changes in the federal definition of marriage, he adds. “This comes up in every meeting.”

The challenge is that no one knows how the Supreme Court will rule on DOMA. And even if the justices do strike it down, no one knows how sweeping the ruling might be or when it might take effect. So financial planners are telling clients to be prepared for anything.

“There are still common sense things — survivorship planning and other things — that people should be doing,” says Stuart Armstrong, a certified financial planner with Centinel Financial Group who has served on the board of directors of PridePlanners, financial planners serving the LGBT community.

“I see a lot of people just doing this ‘wait and see, wait and see.” That can be a dicey approach,” he added.

Read the full story on CNBC


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