May 2019


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  • May 2016



    Paraplanner Profile

    We profile Kim Bendall, director of The Paraplanners, who talks about her baptism of fire as with no experience of running a business she had unexpectedly to take the helm of the firm. We also talk about making the transition from being a full-time paraplanner to also being a director of the company.

    Conference report

    We report from the first of the Personal Finance Society’s Purely Paraplanning conferences, which was held in London, focusing on the paraplanner panel sessions, when three volunteers answered questions from their paraplanner peers.

    Also in this issue:

    Spreading the word about paraplanning at a local school’s careers fair.

    JP Morgan’s Stephanie Flanders provides an economic viewpoint on the risk and reward trade off, while Standard Life’s head of Global Strategy Andrew Milligan looks at the global picture and assesses how investors should position to cope with the current environment.

    FE analyst Thomas McMahon conducts a data analysis on just how much active fund managers improve the skewness of returns.

    We hear about how robotics is developing from a thematic story to a global growth megatrend.

    And the CISI’s Sam Rees-Adams considers the benefits we can all gain from experiencing influences outside of our day-to-day roles.


  • April 2016


    Spring is here and so is the April issue of Professional Paraplanner.

    Click here to read your digital copy.


    Paraplanner profile: Cathi Harrison

    In 2009, having sold her car to give herself three-months money in the bank to pay bills, Cathi Harrison started work as a freelance paraplanner. Since then, she has built Para-Sols into a sought-after outsourced paraplanning firm with offices in Darlington and Leeds and 13 staff.  We talk to her about her business journey.

    Paraplanning Standard

    Do you agree there should be a paraplanning standard, to help define what a paraplanner really looks like? We report from the debates recently held around the country.

    Platform due diligence

    You’ll want to read our 4-page feature in which we talked to seven platform providers about what paraplanners should ask of their platforms over and above the usual questions.


    A return of the popular series from FE outlining useful tips when using FE Analytics.

    Active management

    Smart Beta has been the new catch phrase used by supporters of passive investment strategies but what about ‘Smart Alpha’ and is it worth paying the extra for?

    PLUS: Comment from Dan Atkinson and the CISI’s Sam Rees-Adams; Paraplanner Pointers; biotechnology as a megatrend; Para-meters.

    Technical Insight Seminars

    We are pleased to announce that Rory Percival will be a keynote speaker at the first of the Professional Paraplanner Technical Insight Seminars 2016, to be held in London on 8 June 2016.

    We’ll also be hosting Seminars in Bristol and Manchester later in the year.

    For more information on the Seminars click here.

    To register your interest in attending one of the Seminars click here.



  • March 2016


    Welcome to your March issue of Professional Paraplanner.

    Click here to read the issue.

    There has been rapidly growing recognition amongst advisory firms of the   value that paraplanners can bring to their business. But that value goes beyond simply carrying out paraplanning duties. Often these days paraplanners can get more involved in the business itself, using their experience and analytical abilities to help the company develop and grow.

    This issue we profile Warren Bentham, head of paraplanning at financial planning firm 75point3, who in wanting a role that is “as varied as possible”, is the epitome of a paraplanner who adds value to the advisory business.

    With the Howwow debates on whether paraplanning needs an official national Paraplanning Standard now announced to take place between 4 and 17 March (see Events on the Professional Paraplanner website and this issue’s editorial) our Para-meters survey this issue takes a preliminary look at the issues, testing the water in advance of the debates.

    The results of the debates could change paraplanning in the UK and we urge all paraplanners to get involved. There are three events taking place around the country and one virtual event on 17 March.

    Also this issue:

    Paraplanner Pointers

    One paraplanner offers practical solutions when dealing with work overload


    Top pointers for paraplanners tasked with conducting due diligence into SIPP providers

    Fund manager interview

    Rob Kingsbury talks to Solomon Nevins, manager of the Architas Diversified Real Assets Fund

    Cashflow modeling

    A Voyant Masterclass on Pension Freedoms and asset liquidation in relation to IHT


    Discovering the detail on how cash is managed on platform


    Understanding dividend tax and how it affects the balance between equity funds and investment bonds

    Retirement income

    Can buying an annuity-plus-drawdown packaged product beat buying the elements separately?

    …and philosophy – and how it might apply to paraplanning – see Comment page 32.


    Rob Kingsbury


    Professional Paraplanner


  • Feb 2016


    Welcome to your February issue of Professional Paraplanner, packed with great articles to help you in your day-to-day role as a paraplanner.

    Will 2016 be a seminal year for paraplanning?

    CLICK HERE to access the digital edition.

    2016 should be a full and interesting year for paraplanning. Not only do we have increasing interest in paraplanning among the professional bodies but from under the Powwow teepees we are seeing the roll-out of the Howwows and the Big Tent. All of which should translate into more resources and events specifically for the benefit of the paraplanning community.

    Paraplanners should also look to get involved in the debates around the Paraplanning Standard. Should there be one and if so, what form should it take and who will maintain, monitor and police it?

    For more on what we can look forward to in 2016 read Rob Kingsbury’s editorial and comment from your fellow paraplanners in The Year Ahead on pages 16-17.

    Alan Gow is our profile this issue (pages 9-11), talking frankly about the challenges in setting up an outsourced paraplanning company and his company’s approach to suitability report writing.

    Dan Atkinson tackles the latter subject also, in his article ‘Wisdom is not Waffle’, offering four tips on writing reports clients will read.

    Also this issue we have an extended article from Canada Life’s Sam Newton in which he tackles the topical issues of the new PIP and tapering rules, including some insightful case studies.

    PLUS Pointers, Para-meters, viewpoint and a range of articles covering fixed income, structured products, DFM due diligence and why you need 360 degree CPD.


  • Dec 2015


    Welcome to your December issue of Professional Paraplanner.

    Click here to read the issue

    Among the articles we have for you this month are:

    Rising to the challenge

    For this issue’s paraplanner profile we talk to Helen Parker, winner of the PFS Paraplanner of the Year award 2015, about her 25 years in financial services, her role as senior paraplanner with Clay Rogers & Partners and paraplanning as a profession

    Paraplanner pointers

    We report from Michelle Hoskin’s recent WOW! Workshop, in which Michelle provided key pointers for helping a business to not just give its clients a great service but to Wow them

    IHT and pensions transfers

    Mike Morrison of AJ Bell warns of the potential pitfalls of recommending pensions transfers without first checking on the client’s health

    Changing risk attitudes

    Post Pension Freedoms a client is likely to have at least three different attitudes to risk in relation to their retirement

    Retirement Income Solutions

    How do paraplanners go about offering clients a solution for retirement income that includes what clients really want – flexibility with guarantees

    SSAS in pension planning

    The advantages a SSAS can bring that could mean a better experience and retirement for certain clients

    So what is smart beta?

    Striking an optimal balance between added value and lower costs smart beta investments are growing in popularity

    24 carat advice

    How clients may invest in gold bullion within a SIPP or a SSAS


  • Nov 2015


    Welcome to your November issue of Professional Paraplanner.

    Click here to read the issue

    This month articles include:

    IFP Paraplanner of the Year

    For this issue’s Paraplanner profile we talk to the winner of the IFP Paraplanner of the Year 2015, Adam Wareing. Adam is head of paraplanning at Cheshire-based Clarion Wealth Planning and he tells us about his passion for paraplanning and how he moved roles from financial adviser to financial planner and into the role that he feels really suits his talents, paraplanner.

    Cross-Continent Paraplanning

    Outsourced paraplanner Kate Banham recently upped sticks and emigrated to Canada but she’s continuing to serve her UK clients. We talked to her about the practicalities of running a business 8 hours behind the UK

    The best experience

    Dan Atkinson (last year’s IFP Paraplanner of the Year) writes for us about how he is making the insurance underwriting process more client-friendly

    Death benefits and IHT Planning

    In the second part of his article on death benefits, Sam Newton examines the advantages and potential risks of setting up trusts to hold pension funds

    Due diligence on platforms

    A look at seven key areas to examine when assessing the right platforms for your clients. It’s no surprise that commitment to the market is among them.

    Structured products

    Black swan events may be few and far between but clients need protecting against them. This article looks at the extent to which structured products can serve that purpose.


  • Oct 2015


    In the past month the Personal Finance Society has hosted two of its three conferences exclusively for paraplanners and the third annual Paraplanners Powwow took place under teepees in the Northamptonshire countryside, giving paraplanners a wealth of opportunity to hear from their peers, providers and the FCA. In this issue of Professional Paraplanner we dedicate 7 pages to bring you reports from these events.



    Paraplanner Profile: Jade Connolly of Thomas Miller Investment has built her career from researcher to head of paraplanning. She believes paraplanners have a great opportunity to seize the initiative and pursue the career path they want.

    Viewpoint: Should the paraplanning profession introduce a Kitemark-style standard for individual paraplanners?

    Paraplanner Pointers: Using VLOOK in Excel as a way to quickly and easily cross-reference data in multiple tables

    Property in SIPPS: Insight into commercial property purchase in SIPPs and an example of how the purchase may be carried out in stages

    Death benefits: Knowing the new rules around death benefits is important both for tax reasons and legacy planning

    Trouble ahead?: We asked two experienced fund managers dealing in China and the fixed income markets for their views of what may lie ahead

    Time to ditch the FTSE 100?: Given the relative performance of the FTSE 100 of late should clients now be focussed on the smaller companies sectors?

    Comment: When a firm needs to align its business needs with regulatory decisions it should call upon its paraplanners for help with the processes

    We hope you enjoy this issue. If there are any topics you would like us to cover, please let me know by emailing:

    Rob Kingsbury

    Editor, Professional Paraplanner


  • Sept 2015


    Profile: We talk to Rob Ellis, who heads up the implementation team at Equilibrium Asset Management, tasked solely with onboarding new clients

    Viewpoint: Last issue’s viewpoint on whether paraplanners participating in client meetings should be CF30 authorised brought in some interesting feedback – so we went out to you with a survey.

    The risk triangle: Dan Atkinson outlines how his team looks to balance clients’ three core risk elements

    Working culture: Consultant Sally-Anne Rogers talks to three senior paraplanners and the most recent recruit at Greystone Financial Services about their roles and the ethos of the company

    Powwow Down South: We report from the most recent Powwow, where topics discussed included getting new people into the profession, report writing and illustrations, and getting clients to read suitability reports

    Pensions Technical: Examining how the new money purchase annual allowance, carry forward and pension input periods operate

    Due diligence: Some top tips when carrying out due diligence on SIPP providers

    SIPPs: Ways to increase tax and investment flexibility by holding property in SIPPs

    Comment: To attract new talent into the industry we must be able to define what a paraplanner is, says the IFP’s Sam Rees-Adams