When’s the RRSP Contribution Deadline? Key Dates your Client Needs to Know

The 2022 RRSP deadline is fast approaching! This is the time of year when Canadians tend to rush and contribute a little extra in order to unlock a bigger tax refund.

Here are the key things your client needs to know about the RRSP deadline: Continue reading “When’s the RRSP Contribution Deadline? Key Dates your Client Needs to Know”

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When’s the RRSP Contribution Deadline? Key Dates you Need to Know

What Is an RRSP and How Does It Work?

There are many mysteries in life, for example, what exactly is gluten? We all have holes in our knowledge that we’re embarrassed to admit but if your client is still unsure about what an RRSP is and how it works, now might be a good time to have that conversation.

Using an RRSP doesn’t have to be complicated or intimidating. In fact, once you break it down for your client, they’re pretty straightforward. Even better? Teach your client how RRSPs work, encourage them to open one, have them start contributing and feel confident knowing that they will benefit from this in the future.

So grab a coffee refill and carve out ten minutes to review all that your client needs to know about RRSPs. Then, share the client-friendly version of this article with them via the link at the bottom of this blog. Continue reading “What Is an RRSP and How Does It Work?”

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What Is an RRSP and How Does It Work?

A Murky Path: Continuing Concern Over Beneficiary Designation Legislation

In our previous The Beneficiary Challenge article, we discussed the 2020 Ontario Superior Court case regarding Calmusky v Calmusky. One of the key issues in this case involved the designation of Gary Calmusky as the beneficiary under his deceased father’s Registered Retirement Income Fund (RRIF). This caused quite a stir when Randy, the other adult son, argued that these funds should not have been administered to Gary directly. Randy then took the case to court, maintaining that the RRIF was held in trust for the estate of the father. He also argued that a bank account, previously held jointly by Gary and the father, was also held in trust for the estate.

At that time, the Court decided that a joint bank account should be held in trust for the estate when it resulted from a gratuitous transfer of an asset to an adult child, unless the child can prove that it was the deceased’s intention to gift the asset to them directly. This was consistent with established case law.  However, the court then went on to apply this very same principle to the RRIF beneficiary designation, regardless of legislation already in place honouring such designations! In doing so, the court created doubt as to whether routine designations, whether they be in registered plans or insurance, would now be subject to increased legal scrutiny and litigation.

The Calmusky case was heavily criticized in legal and financial circles. Subsequently, in the 2021 case of Mak Estate v. Mak, a different judge of the same court came to the opposite conclusion from the judge in the Calmusky case. In the Mak case, in considering a RRIF designation of an adult child, the court stated that there was “good reason to doubt the conclusion that the doctrine of resulting trust applies to a beneficiary designation”. The judge’s comments suggest that there is no requirement to determine the intent of an individual who designates a beneficiary supported by legislation, such as that governing registered plans and insurance. Continue reading “A Murky Path: Continuing Concern Over Beneficiary Designation Legislation”

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Beneficiary Designations and the Importance of Transparency

Planning Opportunities in the Women’s Market

As you plan your business development strategies for the coming year and beyond, it may be a good time to consider truly untapped opportunities in the marketplace. For example, understanding how women relate to money and being sensitive to the unique challenges women face can set you apart from your peers.

Watch this video to learn more about this key market segment and how you can make a difference. Continue reading “Planning Opportunities in the Women’s Market”

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Planning for Your Financial Future

Love and Money

Ah love… such a wonderful thing, but sometimes financial strains and worries can get in the way. In fact, 84% of respondents in a Money Magazine survey said that money was the source of marital tensions with disagreements about financial priorities topping the list of problems (1). So, how should your client handle their money in order to avoid these wicked pangs of love?

Here are few insights to share with your clients to help them keep their pocketbooks full and those love lights burning strong (without all those headaches!). Continue reading “Love and Money”

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Love and Money

SMART TALK… about digital assets

Your client has been fairly savvy about their physical assets – they’ve made detailed lists and secured a representative to handle these assets when they are no longer here. However, have they considered their digital assets? Your client’s bank accounts, their social media and online family photos are valuable and need to be protected.

Watch this video, part of our SMART TALK series, and share it with your clients to demonstrate the importance of safeguarding digital assets. Continue reading “SMART TALK… about digital assets”

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SMART TALK…about digital assets

Seg Funds – Protecting your Client from a Volatile Market

2020 was a volatile year for investment portfolios – and for life in general. While we hope the worst is behind us, we know that market volatility is nothing new. Remember the Y2K tech bubble, the sub-prime crisis of 2007/2008 and the Chinese stock market turbulence in 2015/2016? Each of these events saw index declines as great or greater than what we experienced in Q1 2020 as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. This sort of market volatility can be extraordinarily distressing for your investor clients, particularly those in or nearing retirement.

Segregated (seg) funds, an investment product (invested in one or more underlying assets,such as mutual funds or ETFs) combined with an insurance contract, can be appropriate for investor clients who are concerned about volatility, market corrections or long-term bear markets, but don’t want to forsake the possibility of higher returns. By offering guarantees of all or a portion of the principal, seg funds protect invested capital while providing upside exposure. If, during the life of a seg fund contract, the value of the underlying assets grow, your client, or in the case of death their beneficiary, will reap the gain. However, if upon maturity, or the death of the contract holder, the market has fallen, losses can be capped or wholly eliminated. And 100% death benefit guarantees are available to your client investors up to the age of 90 (without medical review requirements). It’s no surprise that seg funds experienced increased popularity in 2020. Continue reading “Seg Funds – Protecting your Client from a Volatile Market”

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The Best of Both Worlds: Segregated funds in a volatile markets

The Power of Compound Interest for Your Client

If your clients dabble in the world of investments, they should know about the power of compounding interest on their investment accounts. That is, the money they invest today – let’s say $100 at a 5% annual interest rate – will earn them $105 in one year. Likewise, if they take that $105 and re-invest it yet again at 5% the following year, your client will earn $110.25, and so on, year after year.

Yes, it is a fairly simple concept but one that your clients should be aware of. The key reason for your client to invest is to earn money on that investment. However, when those savings are increased via monthly deposits or PACS (pre-authorized cheques), they can help your client save on an even larger scale. Continue reading “The Power of Compound Interest for Your Client”

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The Power of Compound Interest

The Estate Wedge

An estate wedge is a planning strategy that can provide tangible solutions for your clients and provide you, as their Advisor, with an excellent opportunity to demonstrate your value.

As your clients age, their financial goals are likely to change and their focus may shift from asset accumulation and growth to estate preservation and wealth transition – an estate wedge can help in this scenario. The strategy involves allocating a portion of your client’s non-registered assets into a segregated fund contract, giving them more control over these assets from an estate planning perspective. This can result in several benefits, such as:

  • Contract owners maintain control over their assets
  • Payout options can be tailored to the needs of the estate – lump sum payments, annuity style settlement or a combination of these can be structured into the contract
  • Clients can employ strategies to address the issue of cognitive decline
  • Payouts are made directly to named beneficiaries following the death of the annuitant, bypassing probate if there is appropriate documentation and expediting the process of asset distribution
  • Distributions are not subject to the terms of the annuitant’s will, which provides privacy and lowers overall settlement costs

Continue reading “The Estate Wedge”

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The Estate Wedge – Your Peace of Mind Option