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Another Incredibly Successful MIAC Conference

Another Incredibly Successful MIAC Conference

June 5, 2019

With the leadership of Auctoris’ Richard Hartmann as the planning committee chair of the conference, along with Grayson Dufrene (co-chair), the planning committee, and the leadership team at M Financial Group, the 2nd M Financial International Advisors Conference (MIAC) was an incredible success.

Nearly 200 attendees, including Member Firms, Advisors, Carriers, and M Financial resources, enjoyed 16 sessions and 37 professional speakers who presented the latest trends and planning strategies for successfully working with wealthy global clients. The conference took place in Miami, May 20-22, 2019.

“Every detail was perfect!” – Enrique Hernandez-Pudillo

“I thought the speakers and topics were invaluable and the networking was terrific” – Judy Pearson


If you are interested in a copy of a specific presentation, please contact Kristin.McGinnis@auctoris.com

Welcome by Wes Thompson

  • M Financial’s CEO reconfirmed our commitment not just to the international market, but to bring the professionals and international clients the best products available.

Navigating Insurance Solutions Available to Wealthy Global Client

  • Speakers: Alan Lurty, Kimberley Martindell, Martin Wilson
  • There are four (4) potential product solutions in each international case and M has access to three of the 4, the 4th being non-competitive: 1) U.S. product for individuals with U.S. nexus, 2) Bermuda product for individuals who do not have nexus, 3) Offshore PPVUL products for non-U.S. citizens, and 4) local (in country) products.

Pre-Immigration Planning

  • Speakers: Jay Krause, Michael Lewis – Moderator Grayson Dufrene
  • From our guests who traveled from London, we heard how important is to offer the most benefits. Between their strategies what I really heard is that we have a great obligation to listen and question clients to truly understand their desire to immigrate and their commitment to stay. Only then can quality income, gift and estate tax strategies be designed and proposed.
    • Key terms and concepts: bed-and-breakfasting, UK charity deductions, decreasing assets before immigration, insuring the risk, “foreign” trusts, drop-off trusts, differences in UK taxes (no gift tax, but has inheritance & estate tax).

Life Insurance Opportunities Around the World – Key Planning Opportunities

  • Speakers: Fabian Gonzalez, Howard Nieswender – Moderator Michael Collins
  • “I found a new hero!” Richard states, “Howard Neiswender, an attorney with a Masters in Tax from NYU proposed a multitude of international strategies utilizing life insurance without any legal or insurance jargon.”
  • Key terms and concepts: life insurance is best tax planning tool available, annuities subject to estate tax for NR aliens, no U.S. insurance company has failed (other countries can’t always say the same), opposite process of foreign PPLI.

Cultural Keynote

  • Speaker: Julia Carson
  • Julia stressed the importance of communication via an understanding of the country/culture’s customs and actions.
  • Key terms and concepts: explore how culture impacts our beliefs, values, and preferences; learn how trust, respect, and comfort manifest themselves in different cultures; gain tips on building effective business relationships across cultures; people don’t like talking about culture because they are scared of making stereotypes (stereotypes can be valid but dangerous), humans wired to dislike what is unfamiliar, move from stereotypes to generalizations, dimensions of trust respect comfort.
  • 3 keys for navigating cultures: self-awareness, awareness & knowledge of home culture, awareness & knowledge of other cultures : 1)Be self-aware (reserving judgement), 2) question assumptions, be curious, and 3) proactively manage cultural differences (think about adaptation).
  • “We don’t see things the way they are, we see things the way we are.” -Anais Nin
  • American’s love bullet points! Not so much in other cultures.

Keynote Speaker

  • Speaker: Sekou Andrews
  • While all of us in attendance have different specialties and degrees – WHO we are is different than WHAT we are/do.
    • Richard’s quote based on the energy and poetic expressions by Sekou “We are poetic voices preserving and protecting prosperity via pragmatic planning for people into perpetuity.
    • Sekou elevated the room’s awareness of their roles of as “advisors,” expressing through exquisite poetic voice that we are so much more, that we bring such an incredible value and service into people’s lives.
    • Richard stated, “Sekou also elevated my awareness of my role – that at the end of the day, I wasn’t simply the Program Chairman giving a summary of the presentations…no… I was able to pontificate on the power of the performance of the professionals who share their presence and presents with us today.”. Plus, Richard also played patty-cake with Sekou, showing us the importance of playing games!
    • Other quotes & concepts by Sekou:
      • You are not broken; You are not your condition; You are not alone; You will get through it
      • Be human
      • Touch & feel!
      • Play games!
      • “This isn’t wrong, this is how we/I do it!”
      • Humanize (not titles) – talk to a CEO like a human not like their title
      • Never underestimate your greatest resource – YOU
      • Lucky for you, you’ve got you! = Insurance
      • Wealth – not whether you can pay for it, whether you can pay it forward
    • @SEKOUworld (IG) @SEKOUandrews (Tw) www.sekouandrews.com

Building a Collaborative Advisor Team for Global Clients

  • Speakers: Aaron Schumacher, Scott Bowman, David Roberts – Moderator Jim Kaplan
  • Once again the strong underlying theme of each speaker of the day was the theme of this group of top international advisors – we are here to serve the needs of clients together. The team must agree to a goal and then have the team drive to that end. Communication breeds efficiency.

Planning for Liquidity to Cover Tax Obligations for the Global Citizen

  • Speakers: Karen Brodsky, Jean Baxley, David Roberts – Moderator Jim Pfleger
  • Key terms and concepts: why foreign nationals buy U.S. life insurance, what is life insurance used for, common uses, questions to ask global clients, potential U.S. tax events for non-U.S. citizens, estate & gift taxation of non-U.S. citizens, divorce considerations (ex: real estate tracked back to spouse who financially contributed, even if both are on title), pre-immigration planning, tax related benefits of life insurance, life cycle of life insurance contract, split-dollar, tax-free exchanges, private placement products, Webber v. Commissioner.

Considerations for Successfully Underwriting Wealthy Global Citizens

  • Speakers: Joel Larson, Mike Hesse, Virginia Craig, David Moon – Moderator Rodger Hergenrader
    • Key terms and concepts: global market UW challenges from a reinsurer perspective, overview of market, distribution partners, carrier specialization in UW wealthy global clients, financial UW, premium financing, reinsurance or reinsurer utilization, automatic and jumbo limits, claim investigation, the future of UW wealthy global clients.

Unique Solutions for U.S. Taxation of Foreign Trusts

  • Speaker: Scott Bowman – Moderator by Michael Mingolelli
  • Key terms and concepts: overview of “foreign” trusts, classification of trusts and trust equivalents, is a trust US or non-US, is trust grantor or non-grantor, taxation of foreign non-grantor trusts (FAI, DNI, UNI, throwback tax, general taxation), unique solutions for addressing UNI, the power of life insurance (plus case studies)!!
  • UNI is not tracked in domestic trusts – only foreign. The best solution for avoiding the accumulation of UNI is to avoid generating any DNI.
  • Throwback tax – bad, bad, bad.


Best Practices for Working with Latin American Residents and the New Wave of Emigrants to the U.S.

  • Speakers: Florian Alencar, Enrique Hernandez-Pulido – Moderator Richard Hartmann.
  • Deep dive session speaker additions: Helmer Arizmendy, Candace Falsetto, Seth Entin – Moderator Jim Pfleger
  • LATAM: Enrique Hernandez used vital examples of building relationships to ease building success in Mexico and LATAM. Our role in planning is to present opportunities to clients to assist them in utilizing their assets to perpetuate what is important in their lives – to perpetuate their values, not just their money.
  • Key terms and concepts: LI never viewed as asset class for premium finance, understanding of opportunity cost; case studies; insurance as a tool for wealth planning purposes, wealth transfer used as a multigenerational income replacement solution (vs traditional insurance commonly used as estate equalization tool).

The Changing Face of High Net Worth in Asia

  • Speakers: Ruben Chen, Michael Collins, Cara Moody, Joy Chang.
  • Deep dive session speaker additions: Mark Petry
  • Robust growth in Asia generated very energetic and robust, practical planning sessions.
  • Key terms and concepts: Benefits of U.S. investment environment, Asia demographics.
  • Boomers in Asia are in 50-60s; 1st gen likes to do it themselves, 2nd gen likes help/advisors; no charitable foundations in China, no estate tax – but likely both coming soon; EB5 via most popular; Parachute children – I.e. sending their kids here for boarding school.
  • Each country gets 10k visa allotment, years ago China had access to excess, but other countries now utilizing their shares more.
  • Partnering in Asia – mistakes: Do not try to do this yourself!  – find someone there to partner with who speaks the language; Build the infrastructure; Gain trust of us domestic carriers; Spend time with someone in that marketplace.
  • 70% of males own real estate in China – because more male population & cultural “condition” of marriage.

Trends, Opportunities and Challenges in the European Market

  • Speakers: Travis Burke, Martin Wilson, Michael Lewis – Moderator Grayson Dufrene
  • The Europe breakout session was so good that London and the UK apparently went from Brexit to “M”-trance!
  • Key terms and concepts: estate taxes across Europe, tax treaties, planning opportunities, U.S. market products up to 50% discount.


While all our technical skills are important, we are all a part of the team to serve the client. So most importantly, we must listen to what the client wants to accomplish before we instruct them how to accomplish it.

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