It took six months for the partners and advisors at LLBH Partners to complete a free diagnostic for a wealthy prospective family client. That's the same amount of time economists take to reliably assess whether the nation's economy is in a recession.

In this case, the family was the picture of wealth, but its portfolio needed urgent pruning. It had engaged about a dozen different firms to manage its $30 million, which was held in multiple family trusts, accounts for the children, retirement accounts and rolled-over pension accounts, among other instruments. Also, the family had money invested in several mutual funds, which Jim Pratt-Heaney, a partner at Greenwich, Conn.-based LLBH, says was a poor choice for a household with that much wealth.

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