Lesbians and Retirement: Saving for the Future

Lisa B. Siegel, Senior Wealth Planner at Wells Fargo, is ready to help!


Retiring comfortably is becoming easier for lesbians, as financial advisors have become increasingly versed in matters facing the LGBT community.

When thinking about retirement and working towards savings goals, lesbians have several unique challenges. Not only working out the usual details about retirement, like saving enough, knowing where and how much to invest, and thinking about retirement, lesbians also face the additional challenges that stem from a lack of federal marriage and inheritance rights.

That doesn't mean lesbians haven't been thinking about their options.

In a national survey conducted by Wells Fargo, they found that lesbians overwhelmingly reported they would find value in information and advice on investing and preparing for retirement. Unfortunately, only 24 percent of lesbians surveyed had a detailed plan for their finances as it related to retirement.

Help is out there, and lesbian women looking to get that nest egg together should know where to get it. The Accredited Domestic Partnership Advisor (ADPA) program was created through a partnership between Wells Fargo with the College for Financial Planning to educate financial advisors about the unique needs and financial considerations of domestic partners. There are more than 100 ADPA-certified financial advisors nationwide, and they are well-equipped to work with LGBT clients.

“It's important for all investors to think through their retirement goals and ensure they have a financial plan that helps them save and invest with a long-term view in mind”, said Lisa B. Siegel, a Senior Wealth Planner at Wells Fargo Private Bank in New York City. “In particular, LGBT investors should coordinate retirement planning efforts with their estate plan to ensure that intended family members and beneficiaries will inherit their assets. To this end, it is imperative for LGBT investors to consult with financial professionals who have experience working through the unique challenges, laws and regulations which impact their financial and estate planning needs.”

Planners like Siegel are a need. Lesbian non-retirees have saved only 24 percent of what they believe they will need to save for retirement, and retirement doesn't come cheap. While many non-retirees think that they will need to save at least $850,000 in order to retire, many of them have saved only about $200,000 on average. It's a step in the right direction but more can certainly be done, especially when the survey reports that more than half of lesbians have not increased their retirement savings in the past year.

With the accessibility of tailored advice for the LGBT community becoming more common, there has never been a better time to save.

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