New York - The American Institute of CPAs has submitted comments on the Securities and Exchange Commission's proposed rules on "family offices," and given the SEC its suggestions on how to define "family clients."

The SEC has proposed rules for defining family offices as required by the Dodd-Frank Act for purposes of exemption under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940. The AICPA wrote in a letter to the SEC that the institute generally supports the definitional approach in the SEC's proposed rule, which, in general, provides that a family office is a company that is wholly owned and controlled by family members; has no clients other than family clients; and does not hold itself out to the public as an investment advisor.

The AICPA, however, suggested that the SEC define the "family clients" of the family offices broadly enough so that all the clients and arrangements typically present in a single-family office are covered, including former family members, family trusts, charitable organizations, and key employees. The AICPA recommended grandparents of the founder and widows and widowers of family members be included, too.



The College for Financial Planning has introduced the Accredited Domestic Partnership Advisor credential, a designation that focuses on financial planning for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender couples, as well as couples living in other non-traditional arrangements.

The credential was tested for two years with a wealth advisory firm, and enrollment is open for financial professionals. To qualify, candidates must hold one or more of the following designations: CFP, CIMA, ChFC, CPA, AAMS, AWMA, CRPC, APMA or J.D.

The curriculum is offered either as a self-study course or online, and includes such issues as wealth transfer, taxation, retirement planning and estate planning.

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