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Lane
Lane, JD, CFP, MBA, CRPS
Category: Finance
Satisfied Customers: 10846
Experience:  Law Degree, specialization in Tax Law and Corporate Law, CFP and MBA, Providing Financial & Tax advice since 1986
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I've been quoted a $2000 fee from an actuary in Florida to

Customer Question

I've been quoted a $2000 fee from an actuary in Florida to review Pension Survivor Benefits and their value payable to my wife in a divorce case. This fee includes testimony at the divorce trial. The monthly benefit is $850, I'm 63 years old and my wife 61. $2000 seems like a lot to pay, in your opinion is this money well spent. My attorney has been indecisive and the trial is soon approaching.
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Finance
Expert:  Lane replied 7 months ago.

Yes, should be an actuary or a CFA, someone who's passed the very rigorous testing and certification to be able to value cash flow streams.

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A CPA or other accountant would be sub-par (in terms of an expert witness).

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If this were a business you'd want a business valuation person ABV (a special certification for CPA's in valuation) or the CVA or ABAr provided by National Assoc of Certified Valuators and Analysts.

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But for pure cash flow streams from pensions and annuities an accredited actuary IS the right professional.

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(Judges know this).

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Now, whether you can get an another actuary to do so for less thn 2000 is another issue.

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
The $2000 fee is for an actuary not a CPA. In your opinion is $2000 fee worth the value I'd get in return. I'm spending a lot on attorney fees now.
Expert:  Lane replied 7 months ago.

Yes, the value you receive here is in the Court's perception of the individual as an expert.

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I can't speak to how fair the charge is (sounds reasonable, generally, but how much professinals charge is VERY dependent on the area of the country/world)

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IF an actuary says that income stream is worth X, the court will take that at face value.

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Putting a value on income streams, annuities, pensions, etc. is what actuaries do.

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I can't speak to the other issues of the case, and neither could an actuary, (such as whether there would be other factors that, even given the value of the benefit being what it is, something might be or might no be awarded).

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But whether a certified actuary is the appropriate expert for valuing pensions is a given.

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And as I said before. The court knows this.

Expert:  Lane replied 7 months ago.

What I WOULD take a look at is your choice of attorney. If the attorney is anything other than ADAMANT about an actuary beig the right choice for the pension valuation question, then I have to wonder if this person understands the financial piece of family/divorce law.

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Now, how much that piece of your total case is worth? Will other issuses impact what's awarded? That's a completely different issue. You haven't provided enough info to BEGIN to assess that.

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I hope you’ll rate me (using those stars, or faces on your screen, by clicking submit) based on thoroughness and accuracy, rather than any good news / bad news content. Otherwise I’m working for no crediting at all here.

Thank you!

Lane

I have a law degree, (Juris Doctorate), with concentration in Tax Law, Estate law & Corporate law, an MBA, with specialization in financial accounting & tax, a BBA, and CFP & CRPS designations, as well - I’ve been providing financial, Social Security/Medicare, estate, corporate, non-profit, and tax advice, since 1986

Expert:  Lane replied 7 months ago.

I hope you’ll rate me (using those stars, or faces on your screen, by clicking submit) based on thoroughness and accuracy, rather than any good news / bad news content. Otherwise I’m working for no crediting at all here.

Thank you!

Lane

I have a law degree, (Juris Doctorate), with concentration in Tax Law, Estate law & Corporate law, an MBA, with specialization in financial accounting & tax, a BBA, and CFP & CRPS designations, as well - I’ve been providing financial, Social Security/Medicare, estate, corporate, non-profit, and tax advice, since 1986