Jonathan M. Forster maintains a nationwide law practice in BakerHostetler’s Private Wealth Group. His entrepreneurial background, coupled with his life insurance and investment management history, provide him with a unique approach to managing family legacies.
Jonathan’s clients include successful families throughout the United States, many of whom are first-generation wealth creators, including public company executives and private company entrepreneurs. He also serves as chief tax counsel for the Association for Advance Life Underwriting (AALU), the life insurance industry’s trade association.
In his role, Jonathan educates the industry on tax legislation as it relates to legacy management, publishes the AALU’s newsletter and serves as an industry bellwether. Clients in this space include life insurance distribution centers such as National Financial Partners, Crump and parts of the M Group, along with carriers such as Guardian, Transamerica and the AALU.
Jonathan’s career of providing legacy management for successful families began in the 1980s, when he worked at EF Hutton as an investment manager and life insurance professional. Following law school, he served as counsel to multiple families with billions of dollars in personal assets, and he became intrigued by the amount of time and numerous disciplines required by families to manage their legacies.
Jonathan also worked at the United States Securities and Exchange Commission during the development of collateralized debt obligations. Later, he founded and served as the CEO of the American Institute for Continuing Education, a training company focused on educating insurance and investment professionals on personal tax and legacy planning.
In an effort to navigate the flaws of modern-day estate planning, Jonathan developed a four-step proprietary system, integrating multiple financial disciplines using financial analytics to identify lifestyle versus legacy capital; manage current capital risks and future exposure; map family resource allocations and tax exposure; link technology to aggregate client data and offer improved client reporting; and employ a management process that utilizes regular oversight and, ultimately, a family summit: a full-on educational roundtable to develop best ideas and educate the next generation.
This process and its four phases — when coordinated with a clear mission, benchmarking, stewardship and philanthropy — provide a far greater platform for success. Families with direction, purpose and vision, along with leadership and execution, realize their goals.
- J.D., George Mason University School of Law, 1989
- B.S., Finance, University of Maryland, 1986
Admissions : Virginia, Maryland, District of Columbia
Memberships : Association for Advanced Life Underwriting, Business Insurance and Estate Planning Committee: General Tax Counsel (2012 to Present)
- University of Maryland Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship, Volunteer (2012 to Present)
- MusiCares/Grammys (2009 to 2010)
- Terrapin Club Board: Board Member (2008 to 2011)
- Hebrew Home of Greater Washington: Board Member (2002 to 2003)
Rate : $$$