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Sam P.
Sam P.
Putney, NSW

Hi, I have recently become the Executor of my dad’s estate. Through his current accountant, I have been recommended to see a Financial Planner as the whole estate is in ASX listed shares. I am worried about getting bad advice. What are some of the questions I should be asking the adviser to know if they are any good?

last year


Hi Sam,

The wind up of the estate need not be difficult. Can you provide some context around the recommendation to see a financial adviser?

Is it because you will be beneficiary of a portfolio of shares? Is it to try and manage tax? Did the accountant say anything more?

I’ll then be able to help with questions.


last year

Hi James

Thanks for responding, I'm the sole beneficiary of the estate and although the shares have performed well over the years the accountant was a bit concerned about being too exposed to one asset class and thought I should find a good financial planner to discuss options. I haven't done this before so not sure of the questions I should be asking



Hi Sam,

Thanks for clarifying.

The discussion with the financial planner needs to actually start with you. Where are you at? What do you want to do with your life etc? They should be working with you to help you use this opportunity to get the most out of your life.

Without the above, it's inappropriate for anyone to be telling you what to do with the money...cash, shares, property or anything else in between.

I'm sure there's some great 'tricky' things that can be done with the shares (even before you actually inherit them) but it has to line up with what you want from your life, not what someone tells you is going to get you the best investment return. If that's what the financial planner starts with, run a mile.

Happy to chat further if you want any more guidance.

Best of luck!

03 9909 5800

Hi Sam,

Ask the accountant, your accountant and/or any other people you trust for a referral. Hopefully they will only refer someone they trust.

Financial planning can be very subjective. Depending on the planners own experience and stage of life, the advice can vary substantially. I'd suggest trying to find someone at a similar stage in life to you, so they will hopefully be with you for the longer term.

From your secondary comments above, it will certainly be worthwhile looking a diversifying your portfolio, but you need to get the advice for your circumstances.

As planners generally charge fee for service, rather than receive commission, you are in a stronger position to get initial comments and get an idea of their views before going too far with someone you don't connect with. A good planner will be someone with your interests in mind, that you feel comfortable liaising with going forward, and who can tweak the plan as your situation changes (spouse/family/work).
If they have a on-size-fits-all attitude, politely thanks the for their time and run 😊.

Once you have their advice, be prepared to ask them questions, and maybe even run it by your accountant (assuming you have one you are comfortable liaising with). While they may not be able to provide advice, they can certainly give feedback for further discussion.

Good luck.

Hi Sam,

agree with everything said here. One thing to keep in mind as the executor: your fathers estate can run for a period of time and still be taxed at normal rates.....which means it gets the $18200 tax free threshold etc......this is important in deciding WHEN the estate should dispose of the shares....there can sometimes be a significant tax advantage if the shares are retained in the estate.....for a short period......then the estate will have to distribute the income to the beneficiary (you) or transfer the estate assets to the beneficiary (you)
sooooo.......make sure your accountant is across those issues too.

good luck

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