Financial advice for older clients – presentation for lawyers

10 May 2018

On 2 May 2018 I gave a presentation to a number of Christchurch lawyers with a special interest in elder law. The title of the presentation was “Financial advice for older clients”.  A version of the presentation (in audio-over-slides format) is above.

Ultimately the presentation is about how lawyers and financial advisers can work together better, and help clients better achieve their outcomes and manage their risks.

In the presentation, I:

  • give a brief introduction to my background and my perspective as a former lawyer and current financial adviser
  • speak briefly about the Australian Royal Commission on Financial Services
  • outline the difference between certain types of financial advisers, such as QFEs, RFAs, and AFAs
  • explain why lawyers and financial advisers are, in the scheme of things, in the same business – helping clients to manage risks
  • describe when lawyers can (and in some cases should) provide financial advice to their clients, for example:
  • talking about life insurance in the context of estate planning
  • saying “you can’t do that!” in certain cases (for example, when the terms of a trust do not allow certain types of investments)
  • identifying investment portfolio red flags that are worth pointing out to clients
  • explain when financial advisers should refer to lawyers, and vice versa
  • talk about an important financial question: “How much do I need in retirement?”, and the many uncertainties involved in retirement planning
  • describe (and illustrate) the difference between “accumulation” and “decumulation”
  • talk about reverse mortgageshome equity release products
  • talk about considering the financial implications when spending/giving/lending significant amounts of money
  • explore the challenges of advising in relation to trusts when beneficiaries have conflicting interests.


accumulation, decumulation, financial advice, giving, law, lawyers, retirement, reverse mortgages, risk management, trusts

About the author 

Sonnie Bailey

In his spare time, Sonnie likes telling people that he’s a former Olympic power walker, a lion tamer, or that he is an orthodontist. He is none of those things. In reality, Sonnie is a financial planner based in Christchurch. Through his business, Fairhaven Wealth (www.fairhavenwealth.co.nz), he provides independent, advice-only, fixed-fee financial planning services. Sonnie is a “recovering lawyer”: he has specialised in trusts and personal client work. He has also worked as a financial services lawyer for many years.

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