Independent insurance advisor, Ross Macfarlane, is passionate about saving tax.
“In this world, nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes,” Benjamin Franklin famously said. Although Canadians have not yet figured out how to live forever, there are legal tools we can use to provide tax-free protection and financial security for our family members and business partners when we pass away,” Ross says.
Ross earned his mechanical engineering degree at the University of Victoria. After graduating he worked in engineering in the tech industry. He later got involved in fundraising for business start-ups. His work allowed him to get to know many business owners and entrepreneurs first-hand.
He quickly realized that although entrepreneurs and business owners are passionate about their businesses they rarely have a good handle on how much of the money that they earn, they actually keep. “I am always amazed that people only focus on how their investments did last year. Few seem to understand or know exactly how much income tax they paid or the amount of their after-tax income.”
Ross says the following example illustrates his point. You would have over $1,048,576 if you invested just $1 and doubled it 20 times. But, if you were taxed at 30% along the way you would have a disappointing $40,642; if you were taxed at 45.7% it’s a pathetic $5,852. Ouch! No wonder the independent insurance advisor says, “Tax Free investment growth is critical. It's not what you make. It's what you keep!.”
“People, myself included, spend too much time working and building our businesses to not care about tax. With all the entrepreneurs and business owners I have met and worked with, the number one complaint they have is that they lose as much as fifty percent of their money to income tax. I help educate my clients about their options and put in place the available tools that will save them tax and make them even more successful than they already are,” Ross says.
As noted earlier, Ross is an independent insurance advisor and works to address business owners’ risk management concerns with tax efficient tools like life and health insurance. He specializes in Corporately-Owned Life Insurance and Group Benefits and has worked with over 400 clients in the past ten years alone.
Specifically, he specializes in:
• Business Partner's Buy Sell Agreement Funding
• Executive Benefits
• Employee Group Benefits
• Tax Sheltering Corporate Earnings
• Corporate Life, Disability, and Critical Illness Insurance
• Personal Life, Disability, and Critical Illness Insurance
“Most agents sell corporate/branded insurance. Because I am an independent Life and Health Insurance Advisor, I am not restricted to any one company or brand. This gives me the flexibility to recommend solutions that best suit the individual client.”
Ross works with tax lawyers, accountants and his clients’ other advisors to identify the best structure for each person’s unique business and personal situation. “As a rule, my clients want to cover health risks, to get all their insurance premiums back if they don't make a claim, and to tax deduct as much as possible. Because I specialize in minimizing the cost and administration of insurance, we can often completely zero out the cost with return of premiums and tax savings.”
According to one of Ross’ clients, Jim Clapp, of Clapp and Co Lawyers, Notary Public, “In the last 10 years since you entered the insurance business, you have set up our corporate life insurance, personal life insurance, children and grandchildren's RESPs, gone over retirement plans, and helped our clients with their life insurance and investments. You have proved over and over again that you give solid advice, and the right insurance solutions for our business, my family, and our clients. In summary, you are reliable, trustworthy, and highly recommended.”
Ross holds an annual client seminar for CPA’s and Lawyers to educate them on Tax Strategies for Businesses and Individuals. His clients invite their tax professionals and other service providers to attend. Ross says, “The number one question I always get is, “How much will it cost?” My answer is always the same. “How much will it cost if you or your clients don’t take advantage of the tax sheltering provided by life insurance or how much will it cost if you suffer from cancer or some other illness?”
With the recent corporate tax changes to investment income and income splitting, Ross believes that the need has never been more critical for professionals and business owners to learn these tax saving solutions. “I love setting up structures for tax-free retirement income. I have the tools to get money out of corporations to owners and their key employees on a tax-free basis.”
Up Close & Personal
Ross was born and raised in Prince George and moved to Victoria to go to University. He loves the lifestyle opportunities and goes skiing and rides his mountain and motor bikes as often as family and client obligations permit. He has one son and one daughter.
“Keeping everyone safe,” is a recurrent theme in Ross’ personal life and career. Ross volunteers his time setting up cycling race courses and as a spotter, which Meriam-Webster dictionary describes as a person stationed to minimize the risk of accidents or injuries.
As a final word, Ross says, “I like having fun, and saving money is fun. I help families and business owners keep more of their hard-earned money by setting up the path to have money flow out of the business on a tax-free basis. In my opinion, the best tax shelter is life insurance because it offers actual protection and financial security for family members when you pass away. Besides, at the end of the day, rather than asking for money, I like being the guy that delivers the cheque.”
Suzen Fromstein is the author of Suits and Ladders, Ten Proven Ways to Keep Your Job Safe - with a few jokes thrown in. Suits and Ladders was an Amazon Best Selling Book in the Career Guides Category
#302 - 4400 Chatterton Way,
Victoria BC, V8X 5J2