Working with wealth, with family

Family Resolutions


Money is one of those things that perhaps one may think ultra-high-net-worth (UHNW) families do not worry about.  Au contraire. The circumstances may be unique in comparison to the average family who may live paycheck to paycheck, however, UHNW families have their own particular set of financial concerns. Whether it be new tax laws lowering their income, family disputes, estate planning, or finding the best way to protect their current wealth, the one common thread UHNW families and average income families have is, they are both human. One may wear Gucci and the other Joe Fresh, but families are families.

Here is an example of my family. We are currently a family spanning 3 generations and numbering 47 individuals. One of the major issues that we have to face is family disagreements. It was easy when my parents were both alive as they ruled the roost and would not entertain any contentious subjects. All that changed with their passing. The suppressed anger and tensions were aired vociferously and I, as the family consiglieri, along with my older brother, had to find a solution and quickly.

The root of all our problems became quite readily apparent - the lack of communication between all the family members. My brothers and sisters felt they were not consulted on financial issues that involved them. After all, a portion of the assets that I managed was theirs. Consequently, we established a family council that met twice a year where any subject could be broached without the fear of rejection or intimidation as so frequently happened under my parents‘ autocratic regime. A tentative agenda is emailed out in advance and anyone can add items of interest or concern to it.

We meet as a family, along with our accountant and lawyer present and tackle the agenda with gusto. To resolve any contentious issues, after an exhaustive discussion, a motion is put to the council and voted on. The result might not satisfy all present, but we have a dispute resolution protocol that is known and binding.

Our system works for us and the proof is that all the family members are in attendance. I find that very satisfying.

Whether you are self-made or have inherited family money, you can see that UHNW families need help just like anybody else. Our family found a solution. I am certain yours will too.

To learn more about Holdun Family Office click here. www.holdun.com

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