Estate Planner to the Ultra High Net Worth: Calvin Lo

Calvin Lo

Estate planning is one of the growing areas of wealth management, especially for the ultra-high net worth individuals. Not only are the nuances of estate planning fairly complicated, but things in the industry are also constantly changing, which often makes it difficult to keep up. From tax laws to tax liabilities to other issues that affect the family, there are so many things one must consider. Some of the goals include protecting inheritances for heirs, minimizing estate taxes, avoiding the probate process, and appointing the right trustee. The use of life insurance is often part and parcel of any estate plan as it creates liquidity to address whatever financial needs or obligations that can be levied in the assets upon transfer.

Given the growing popularity of estate planning among the super-rich, various personalities have come up in the business sector to help the wealthy plan their estates and eliminate possible obligations that could be levied on the assets upon transfer. One such personality is Calvin Lo (盧啟賢)CEO of a life insurance broker, R.E. Lee International. Founded in 1954, the company specializes in estate planning for ultra-high net worth businesses and individuals. It is reported that his group brokers an estimated premium of US$1 billion annually, making them one of the most successful life insurance brokers in the world. Under his stewardship, Lo later expanded the business and founded R.E. Lee Capital, an asset management firm with US$8 billion under management. With his incredible success, Lo has accumulated personal wealth of US$1.7 billion.

Estate planning professionals are important since they possess a wealth of experience in estate planning issues and areas of focus. Lo, for example, manages and offers solutions on estate planning in over 65 countries, which means that he has a lot of information on how to plan estates successfully. They can advise on the different structures, the best methods of transfer based on the needs of the person, and the intended recipients of the resources and assets of the holder. Other areas include the different options to protect the privacy of the assets covered in the policy and specifically protection against possible frivolous and unjust lawsuits. Failing to include a professional in any estate planning means that a wealthy person loses out on gaining critical information for the successful transfer of assets.

Estate planning involves the activities of preparing for the transfer of the wealth and assets of the wealthy after their death. Life insurance, pensions, assets, real estate, personal belongings, cars, and debts are included in an individual's estate. As pertains to life insurance to estate planning, the aim is to create liquidity that excludes the proceeds paid to the beneficiaries of any federal estate tax during the transfer of the assets after the insured's demise. Life insurance helps to create liquidity for the estate to address any financial obligations. In most cases, if properly planned out, beneficiaries of the estate receive all the assets and proceed tax-free, thus protecting them against an immediate shortfall due to tax obligations that may arise after the death of the insured. Also,

One factor that worries the wealthy is whether, upon death, their estate will be divided according to their wish. Family disagreements may occur over the division of wealth. A specialist such as Lo, comes in during this time and stands on behalf of their client's estate to ensure the execution is according to the plan originally set to be. This helps to overcome any conflicts that could occur and allows a smooth transition of the estate.

In a nutshell, estate planning is important for the effective and orderly transfer of the resources and wealth of individuals to the assigned beneficiaries. Life insurance is provided as part of estate planning to ensure that the resources are transferred to protect the wealth and fortunes to be inherited.

Individuals such as Lo provide critical professional expertise in estate planning. They help the wealthy overcome the hassles of estate planning, advise on relevant clauses, and support the processing of the transfer of the resources. Nevertheless, like Lo himself, his clients are an elite group of fabulously wealthy private individuals who also don't actually want the world to know how rich they are. In other words, they consider Lo as "one of us". The only difference is that Lo is usually far wealthier than the people he advises. He understands the problems and demands the top 0.1% faces, and therefore advise accordingly. This is not run-of-the-mill advice that many of today's wealth planners, private bankers, and fund managers regurgitate from a textbook, but advice from someone who actually faces the same, if not more, estate planning challenges.

Nothing better than having a supremely successful billionaire like Lo as your guiding light, that is if you manage to get that privilege.