Fiduciary Standards

Putting Fiduciary First

Studies show many consumers don’t understand the concept of fiduciary. The State of Consumer Retirement Advice Survey, conducted in 2017, found that just four in 10 people know what the word means, and 20 percent mistakenly think it’s just another word for a financial advisor.

A fiduciary is someone who is required to act in the best interest of a client, and not all people who offer financial advice have that obligation.

Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP®) Ethan Freishtat offers comprehensive advice for investors to make sure that the professional they hire will make their interests the primary driving factor behind any decisions.

ethan700x5Ethan states, “You shouldn’t work with anyone who isn’t a fiduciary. You should always want your interests to come first.”

As a CFP®, Freishtat is obligated to put his clients’ interests first at all times. In fact, he holds a conversation with each client to help them understand fiduciary responsibilities and why they’re important.

Ethan spent 14 years working for a large financial services company, and he knows advisors in a large firm are often incentivized to push specific mutual funds and are not true fiduciaries.

“With an independent advisor, you are getting the best objective information, because there’s nothing to pull the advisor to recommend certain investments,” he said.

Freishtat founded Westborough, Massachusetts-based Legacy Financial because he wanted to maintain relationships with his clients and create individualized plans for them, something he couldn’t do while managing up to $500 million in accounts for a large institution.

His firm specializes in helping clients reach financial independence while considering their charitable goals and legacy planning. He takes special interest in working with families that are facing some form of physical or mental disability.

Legacy Financial provides two complimentary meetings. The first meeting is an opportunity for Ethan to get to know the client. At the second meeting he outlines a proposal to meet the client’s objectives.
ethanq800x200Freishtat’s customized solutions focus on controlling risks for every client, based on factors such as the timeframe the client is facing before retirement and his or her life expectancy. He utilizes conservative estimates to be sure his clients are ready for even the worst-case scenario.

As the bull market nears its tenth year, Freishtat believes it’s important to offer clients options with downside protection built in, such as structured notes and ETFs designed with algorithms that will sell automatically when the market reaches a set point.

“The benefit of downside protection is that if the market is down substantially, clients won’t have to worry as much about downscaling or not being able to have the retirement lifestyle they desire,” he said. “Our ultimate goal is to help people live the life they want.”

For more information on Legacy Financial, visit


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