General Financial Planning FAQs

Private wealth management is a comprehensive combination of financial planning, investment management, and personal relationship, with the ultimate aim of helping clients achieve their financial life goals and to position their estate to pass to their heirs when the time comes in ways that meet their wishes, minimizes taxes, fees, and risks, and helps maintain family peace.

Personal financial planning is a process of making decisions about all areas of your financial life. The process includes gathering information about your assets, liabilities, spending, and income; discussing and identifying goals and objectives; modeling and presenting financial solutions; then implementing a plan using either tax and legal strategies or investment and risk management recommendations.

The financial planning process is both an art and a science where a good planner can literally lead a client through a process of self-discovery about how they feel about money and what they want to accomplish with their lives. We believe that excellent financial planning is just as much about people and families as it is about analysis, scenario modeling and the latest tax strategies.

A financial planner is a trusted counselor who helps guide you through making good decisions that are right for you and your finances. Excellent planners help you to be more objective and less emotional in your decision-making process. They also help educate you about tax and legal issues that can be difficult to understand. A comprehensive financial plan involves expertise in a variety of disciplines that most individuals probably do not have the time or interest to properly research.

You will want to make sure that the financial planner has your best interests in mind and that he or she isn’t selling you products that are not suited to your needs. As independent advisors, wealth advisors at ATS Wealth Management are not tied to any specific program or product so they are able to make recommendations and create a plan that fits your specific needs and your tolerance to risk.

Financial planning is the development of a plan for evaluating a client’s current financial situation, identifying areas of need, and planning for future life events. Wealth management is a comprehensive approach that focuses specifically on higher net worth individuals including advice on investment management, estate planning, asset protection, and private banking. Our wealth management approach is driven Reviewed By the desire to provide the highest level of client service that meets your current and future financial situation.

Asset allocation is the strategic approach of distributing investments among different types of assets, such as stocks and bonds, to help optimize the trade-off between risk and return. ATS Wealth Management finds that asset allocation is most effective when it is oriented to an investor’s specific investment goals, tolerance for risk, and well-defined personal objectives.

*Asset allocation does not assure or guarantee better performance/profit and cannot eliminate the risk of investment losses in declining markets.

Fiduciary means to hold a confidence or trust. A financial services industry professional who has a fiduciary responsibility to his or her clients must put a client’s needs and interests ahead of his or her own. At ATS Wealth Management, we act in a fiduciary capacity for our clients and always put your needs and interests first. Remember, you are part of the ATS Wealth Management family and we always treat you as a family member.
Like other fee-only advisors, ATS Wealth Management is compensated Reviewed By a percentage of the assets we manage for our clients. We do not receive commissions on trades or on products or services selected for clients. We have no surrender charges or administrative costs relating to client accounts other than those that specific products we sometimes use, such as annuities or life insurance, require. A fee-only compensation structure allows us to make decisions based solely on what we truly believe will help clients reach their financial goals while protecting their assets and managing risks to their comfort levels.
Unlike stockbrokers, RIA firms, such as ATS Wealth Management, hold a fiduciary responsibility to always put our clients’ best interests first. Other benefits of working with an RIA include peace of mind in knowing that all fees have been fully disclosed and not paying commission on every trade or concern that we will churn your account with unnecessary trades.

ATS Wealth Management FAQs

ATS Wealth Management is a Registered Independent Advisor (RIA) and all wealth managers are Investment Advisory Representatives (IAR’s). An IAR must be registered with the security agency of the state in which he or she does business and must also be registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission if assets under management exceed $25 million.

ATS Wealth Management Advisors invest in the same stocks, bonds, and other financial instruments that they recommend to clients. They also set up personal estate plans that align to the same principles recommended to clients. As with all individualized asset management, the personal investment needs of managers may not match those of clients and thus assets may be invested differently.
Yes. We are a Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) with the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission.
Our firm was founded in 1990. Each ATS wealth manager brings years of financial experience and a depth of knowledge to benefit each and every client.
Our mission is to deliver unbiased advice while building client loyalty through extraordinary personal service. We give you confidence for life.
We are a client-centric, high-touch wealth management firm that believes in the power of listening. Our advice is highly personalized keeping in mind your goals, risk tolerance and current financial obligations.

As financial planners and investment consultants, we believe in the following fundamental principals with regard to designing an investment portfolio and making specific recommendations:

The purpose of a client’s investment portfolio is to fund current and/or future financial objectives.

The design of the portfolio must take into account the client’s financial objectives, tolerance for risk, needs for current income or liquidity, and special considerations such as income and estate taxes.

We know that no one can predict the future. It is a difference of opinion that makes a market. Investment and economic “experts” provided with the same information often come to different conclusions. We do not suggest that we can or will make the correct decision every time.

We believe that studying the historical trends and relationships of investment classes and the philosophies and approaches of successful investment managers can provide valuable insight.

The appropriate allocation of investment assets for your goals and risk tolerance is the most important component in developing an investment portfolio. We believe that having a diversified, well-balanced portfolio, following long-term strategies, and having patience, will increase the likelihood that you will achieve your long-term financial objectives and create the estate that you want to leave to your heirs.

Our typical clients often have large, multi-faceted financial situations that require comprehensive, integrative, and objective strategies. We serve as our clients’ financial advocate, helping them to find the most suitable financial and estate plan and service offerings for their needs. We also provide direction and coordination for our clients’ other advisors, such as their attorneys and CPAs, so that our clients are relieved of day-to-day concerns about the management of their financial affairs. While our clients’ investable assets typically exceed $1 million, we serve clients at every asset level. We are also proud to serve multiple generations of many of our client families as we know that even the best estate plan is not effective if it is not managed properly once the estate owner passes away.

Our clients value and implement our feedback and advice that we provide through our series of advanced strategies seminars and webinars. They take advantage of the ongoing financial and investment-related education we offer. Our clients are looking to establish a close, long-lasting relationship with their financial advisor and so are we.

Our flexible planning options allow us to serve clients in many stages of life. We especially support clients who are nearing retirement or have already passed that life milestone. You’ve worked hard to get where you are and as you start to look at how to spend your life enjoying the fruits of your labor, you want to ensure that your money is still growing and protected and that your wishes for your heirs will be carried out after you’re gone.

Due to industry regulations, your ATS Wealth Management team provides services through two different companies, even though you are working with the same wealth manager. Programs that we offer that involve insurance aspects, such as life insurance or annuities, are managed under control of FINRA regulations and are offered Reviewed By Advanced Trustee Strategies, Inc. Other services we offer are done so as Independent Advisor Representatives and these services are managed as ATS Wealth Management, Inc. However, you will be working with the same personal wealth manager for all your needs and this partition of our services does not alter our commitment to providing you with the best solutions to meet your needs in all financial areas.

Yes. Our Investment Committee adheres to our own proprietary investment strategy drawing on the 80 years of combined investment experience of the ATS Wealth Management team as well as sophisticated AI-based targeted investment analysis Reviewed By our key technical analyst, Dr. David Fogel.

Our investment approach goes beyond conventional number crunching to evaluate the fundamentals of companies, such as the skill of management teams in generating profits and the competitive environment of the industry. Our Investment Committee constantly monitors holdings and decides as a team to add or eliminate select positions within our portfolios. In addition, we use a number of independent third-party research sources when analyzing potential investments and current holdings staying on top of market and world conditions and balancing the protection of our clients’ assets with the ability to increase their wealth.

Yes. ATS Wealth Management carries out a comprehensive financial planning process that takes into consideration all aspects of your specific financial situation. We have a network of legal, accounting, and insurance resources that we will include in your strategic planning as appropriate.

Working with ATS Wealth Management FAQs

First, you can expect us to get to know you well. We strive to learn as much as possible about our clients and their families because it helps us to guide them toward better financial and estate planning decisions.

Second, you can expect attention to detail, prompt response to letters, calls and emails, clear reasoning for our recommendations, diligent execution of the tasks at hand, and confidentiality in all matters.

Finally, you can expect absolute honesty and integrity in every meeting, every observation, and every recommendation we make. You can, and should, expect us to adhere to the highest ethical and professional standards in every aspect of our relationship.

As a fee-only provider of professional financial services, ATS Wealth Management provides a clearly defined fee schedule to our clients. Most of our services are paid for as a percentage of each client’s assets under management. Our fee is clearly defined in our initial client meetings and all statements clearly outline the quarterly management fee charged to accounts.

At ATS Wealth Management, we’re here to help you through your entire life and even after to see that your wealth is used to provide you the life you desire and to benefit your heirs according to your wishes. As life brings its inevitable changes, we stay in touch with you on a regular basis, typically at least once per quarter, to review your situation and assure that your plan still aligns to meet your needs. You should also consider making an appointment in anticipation of life-changing events such as marriage, the birth of a child, divorce, or after inheriting a large amount of money so we can address key life events as they occur.

Our experience is that failure rate of this type of arrangement is very high. Of course it is always your money and you make the ultimate decision. However, we are firmly convinced that the stakes are too high for individual investors to implement on their own.

The first step is an initial inquiry from you. Call us, at (858) 643-5757 or email us at

We’ll set up a complimentary initial meeting with you to get to know your situation, to explore your intentions and goals, and to answer any questions you have for us. If what you hear is of interest to you, we’ll set a time to talk with you again, in person or online, to dive deeper into your situation and intentions so we can determine the best strategy and plan for you. We also recommend you join us for our weekly webinars where we discuss strategy ideas and how to avoid the common mistakes and wrong assumptions that people make when they consider their estate planning and wealth management. We believe that the better informed you are, the better financial decisions you’ll make.

Although we are based in San Diego, California, we work with clients all over the country. Thanks to the development of new communication technologies, we’re able to make sure the experience of our out-of-the-area clients is as positive as that of our local clients. We also utilize these remote connection technologies to stay in touch with our clients concerned for their health during the Covid-19 pandemic.

To do that, we use Zoom for virtual meetings and our webinars as well as emailed information and updates to our websites with regular news and announcements. Clients also use the online client access portals to track their financial investments and documents.

Rather than simply have you fill out a questionnaire asking you your level of risk tolerance and then fitting you into a cookie-cutter plan based on that simple analysis, ATS Wealth Management takes a more proactive goal-oriented approach to analyzing your tolerance for risk.

Your personal ATS wealth manager will start Reviewed By helping you define the key financial goals you have for the near term and long term and assign a priority to each goal. They will then help you determine how much money you will need to reach those financial goals. This then determines how much risk you will need to take to achieve those goals. We believe that many investors take on more risk in their portfolios than they need to—and oftentimes more than they are comfortable with. However, when you can easily see how the risk you take on aligns with your most important financial life goals, we believe you’ll feel better with the investment strategies we determine match your goals and manage the risks appropriately.

Yes. We offer complimentary reviews to our clients for any of your current financial or investment accounts and can recommend tax-efficient strategies to transition from your current holdings into more suitable positions, if applicable. This can be done immediately and all at once or gradually, depending on your needs and the risks associated with how your current portfolio is constructed.

As an independent Registered Investment Advisor (RIA), ATS Wealth Management does not hold custody of your account(s) and is restricted Reviewed By exacting laws and regulations. As such, we do not physically hold your money or investments, nor do we produce your monthly statements. Instead, we use firms such as TD Ameritrade as our clients’ custodians to hold money and execute trades. ATS Wealth Management and your custodian are separate companies with no overlapping management or control, providing a trustworthy system of checks and balances. Our clients never lose control of their accounts and always have real-time access to their account balances and holdings.

You may easily access your account(s) 24/7 through the ATS Wealth Management online client on your PC/Mac or mobile device. Every ATS Wealth Management client has complimentary access to the powerful eMoney Advisor “Vault” service where you can easily track the status of all your investments and other financial accounts, manage your process in achieving your financial goals, and store and maintain important financial and legal documents.

Your personal ATS Wealth Advisor is always available to meet with you in person, via online Zoom calls, or over the phone as often as necessary. We also provide quarterly reports, periodic market updates, a weekly market update, and regular account reviews.