Interest among financial advisors in going independent is as high as it’s ever been for many reasons— better economics, more flexibility, better technology, the ability to choose the investments they want to use, and above all client focus. More advisors would probably make the move sooner if not for the perceived – or more to the point, misperceived – hurdles. Legal and compliance issues generally factor in that list, but with the right partners to work with those issues become more like stepping stones than hurdles.

Whether starting an RIA or joining one, clarifying the legal and regulatory considerations and requirements around independence will help advisors identify what’s needed to put in place to facilitate building a successful firm and fulfill their vision. Leveraging the expertise and skills of experienced attorneys, compliance professionals and other service providers, and following well-defined procedures will make the process of transition smoother, probably faster and definitely more pleasant.

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