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Four Tips on Choosing a Personal Injury Lawyer You should hire a personal injury attorney to help you when you get injured in an accident that is not your fault. The attorneys understand personal injury law and can help you get compensation for your injuries or losses. Experienced attorneys can handle slip-and-fall injuries, accident cases and machinery injuries. It’s in your best interest to hire a competent lawyer to help you as soon as you have been injured. There are different attorneys you can approach to help you with the injury case. However, you should find out whether the attorney can help you get a reasonable compensation for your injuries. Below are some things you should consider when looking for a personal injury lawyer: i) Where the attorney is specialized Consider the specialization of the lawyer. Some of the areas that the lawyer may be specialized in include financial fraud, child custody cases, criminal cases and so on. None of these attorneys will be a good hire since they are specialized in different areas. Look for a lawyer that has specialized in personal injury law. The lawyer will know the options you have regarding your case and what the likely outcome can be.
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ii) How experienced the lawyer is Make sure any attorney you want to work with has handled personal injury cases in the past. Your best option would be to hire an attorney that has worked for a number of years and has a proven track record of helping clients win compensation. Find an attorney that is known to be good at the job. Also, ensure the lawyer usually works with personal injury victims rather than the parties responsible. The lawyer should also have handle more cases of personal injury victims rather than those of the defending parties.
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iii) How much will the attorney charge you? Find out how much the lawyer will charge you for the services. Before the attorney agrees to offer you compensation, he/she should advise you on all your options. Should you decide to work with the lawyer, he/she can provide the legal services without asking for upfront payment. The only time you will have to pay the lawyer is when your compensation has been approved and disbursed. This is known as contingency arrangement. iv) Referrals from past clients Find out which clients the attorney has worked with in the past. You can then contact these clients and ask about their experience with the lawyer. Most people who were happy with the work that the attorney did will happily recommend him/her. If you wish to be compensated fairly for the injuries you sustained at work or any place, you need to find a good attorney. You can find the right personal injury lawyer to hire by following the four tips above.

Increase Your Financial IQ

Robert Kiyosaki, author of this text entitled Increase Your Financial IQ is an investor, entrepreneur and educator whose perspectives on money and investing align with conventional wisdom. Kiyosaki has challenged and changed the way many people around the world think about money.

Born and raised in Hawaii, this financial expert is a fourth-generation Japanese-American. After graduating from college in New York, Kiyosaki joined the Marine Corps and served in Vietnam as an officer and helicopter gunship pilot.

On the question of whether money makes one rich, this author says it is not so. He explains that money alone does not make one rich, adding that we all know people who go to work every day, work for money, make more money, but fail to become richer.

This financial expert asserts that ironically, many only grow deeper in debt with the money they earn. Kiyosaki says we have all heard stories of lottery winners, instant millionaires, who are instantly poor again. He adds that again, we have heard stories of real estate going into foreclosure, and instead of making homeowners richer, more financially secure, real estate drives homeowners out of their homes and into the poorhouse.

Kiyosaki says many of us know of individuals who have lost money investing in the stock market. He educates that even investing in gold, the world’s only real money, can cost investors money.

According to him, this text is not a get-rich one or a text about some financial magic formula. Rather, he says it is about increasing your financial intelligence, your financial IQ. It is about getting richer by getting smarter and the five basic forms of financial intelligence required to grow richer, regardless of what the economy, stocks, or real estate markets are doing, reveals this author.

Structurally, this text is segmented into ten chapters. Chapter one is interrogatively entitled What is financial intelligence? In this author’s words here, “Money alone does not solve your money problems. That is why giving poor people money does not solve their money problems. In many cases, it only prolongs the problem and creates more poor people.”

Kiyosaki educates that hardwork also does not solve money problems, stressing that the world is filled with hardworking people who earn money, yet grow deeper in debt, needing to work even harder for more money.

He says education does not solve money problems, adding that the world is filled with highly educated poor people.

According to Kiyosaki, it is only financial intelligence that solves all money problems. In his words, “In simple words, financial intelligence is that part of our total intelligence we use to solve financial problems… Financial intelligence solves these and other money problems. Unfortunately, if our financial intelligence is not developed enough to solve our problems, the problems persist… Many times they get worse, causing even more money problems. For example, there are millions of people who do not have enough money set aside for retirement. If they fail to solve that problem, the problem will get worse, as they grow older and require more money for medical care.”

This author reiterates that whether or not you like it, money does not affect lifestyle and quality of life, adding that the freedom of choice that money offers can mean the difference between hitchhiking or taking bus or travelling by a private jet.

Chapter two is based on the subject matter of the five financial intelligence quotients (IQs). Kiyosaki educates that the five basic financial IQs are: Making more money (Financial IQ No 1); protecting your money (Financial IQ No2); budgeting your money (Financial IQ No3); leveraging your money (Financial IQ No4) and improving your financial information (Financial IQ No5).

As regards difference between financial intelligence and financial IQ, he says, “Most of us know that a person with a mental IQ of 130 is supposedly smarter than a person with an IQ of 95. The same parallels can be drawn with financial IQ. You can be the equivalent of a moron when it comes to financial intelligence… Financial intelligence is that part of our mental intelligence we use to solve our financial problems. Financial IQ is the measurement of that intelligence. It is how we quantify our financial intelligence. For example, if I earn $100,000 and pay 20 per cent in taxes, I have a higher financial IQ than someone who earns $100,000 and pays 50 per cent.”

Kiyosaki explains that in this example, the person who earns a net of $80,000 after taxes has a higher financial IQ than the person who earns a net of $50,000 after taxes. Both have financial intelligence, but the one that keeps more money has a higher financial IQ, educates this expert.

In chapters three to seven, the five financial IQs already discussed in chapter two, are elaborately examined respectively.

Chapter eight is christened The integrity of money. According to Kiyosaki here, “‘Integrity’ is an interesting word. I have heard it used in many different ways and in different contexts. I believe it is one of the more misused, confused, and abused words in the English language. Many times I have heard someone say, ‘He has no integrity’, or ‘If they had any integrity, they would be more successful’. Someone else might say, ‘That house has integrity of design’.”

This author says before discussing the integrity of money, it is necessary to define Integrity. Kiyosaki says “Integrity”, according to Webster, can be defined as “Soundness” (an unimpaired condition); “Incorruptibility” (firm adherence to a code of especially moral or artistic values) and “Completeness” (the quality or state of being complete or undivided).

This expert educates that just as health can break down from a literal lack of integrity, so can wealth be compromised by lack of integrity. “Instead of disease or death, which comes from a breakdown in the body’s integrity, symptoms of a lack of financial integrity are low income, crippling taxes, high expenses, excessive debt, bankruptcy, foreclosure, increased crime, violence, sadness, and despair,” expatiates this author.

He says the integrity of all the five financial IQs is needed to grow rich, stay rich and pass wealth on to generations after you. Kiyosaki asserts that missing one or more of the financial IQs is like someone who does not know how to drive attempting to drive a car that has brakes without pads, and water in the gas line.

In this author’s words, “When a person is struggling financially, one or more of these financial intelligences is out of whack, financial integrity is not sound, and the person is not complete. For example, I have a friend who earns a lot of money as a manager of a small business. Her problem is she has no protection against taxes, plus she does not budget wells, spends impulsively to buy clothes and goes up in price. She gets her financial advice from her husband and his (the husband’s) financial planner.”

In chapters nine and ten, this author beams his intellectual searchlight on the concepts of developing your financial genius and developing your financial IQ.

As regards style, this text is a prototype for stylistic excellence. For instance, most of the illustrations are based on the financial experiences of the author himself, thus lending credibility and conviction to the text. The language is simple and the presentation very didactic. Kiyosaki generously employs graphical embroidery to achieve visual reinforcement of readers’ understanding and make the layout of the text eye-friendly.

However, conceptual repetition is noticed in chapters three to seven where the five financial IQs already discussed in chapter two are further examined. One would have expected him to have harmonised chapters two to seven. Probably, Kiyosaki wants to create emphasis through deliberate repetition.

Also, the word “Intelligence” whose grammatical behaviour in the dictionary shows that it is an uncountable noun as reflected by the symbol “U” against it, is still used in this text in a countable way on pages 150 and 151 where we have “Intelligences”.

In spite of the few errors, this text is fantastic. It is a must-read for those who want to accomplish financial freedom and abundance through concrete financial education.

Personal Financial Plan – What It Is and Why Is It Important for Achieving Financial Goals

A financial plan is not about getting rich, and you don’t have to be rich to have one. It’s about doing more with what you have.

A financial plan is the road map for your financial life. It covers major financial areas of your life addressing aspects such as cash flow, savings, debt management, risk management, children’s education planning, taxes, retirement, estate planning, and of course, investments and a strategy for managing them. It is more than a guide. It is a written strategy that gives you a clear, pragmatic path to follow towards the accomplishment of your most important financial goals.

Having a financial plan is like having a travel plan – it identifies where you’re going, how and when you’ll get there, how much will it cost, and things to do along the way. A personal financial plan looks at where you are today and where you want to go. Then it sets out all the steps you need to take to get there. Everyone who is earning should draw up a financial plan. The plan will help you get the most from your money and help you in achieving your financial goals in life.

Some people naturally resist the process of creating a Financial Plan. Initially, it seems overwhelming and/or just too much of trouble. However, the potentially devastating consequences of not having it are far greater than the initial discomfort that you experience of the process. For most people we have worked with, the hardest part is just making the decision to get started. Once the process has begun, most clients find it engaging and interesting.

Do you need financial plan?

Yes – if you have an income, a family or planning to have one in the future, retirement dreams, and for many other financial reasons / goals that are unique to you. No one can predict the future but one can certainly be better prepared for it. An effective financial plan will make sure that you are financially prepared to deal with the unexpected events and stormy times. If you don’t have one, you’re more likely to end up in a financial mess. On the contrary, if you have one and the recommendations thereon have been executed, most of your financial goals will be satisfactorily met. A good financial plan can alert you to changes that must be made to make sure a smooth transition through life’s financial phases, such as decreasing spending or changing asset allocation.

By developing a financial plan you and your family:

  • Will have a better understanding of your current financial position.
  • Determine attainable retirement, education, insurance, and other financial goals.
  • Review goals, funding strategies, and alternatives to balance all goals.
  • Have the necessary financial resources set aside to fund your goals as they occur.
  • Reduce the effects of unexpected events such as disability, premature death etc.

You need not be very rich to have a financial plan. No matter how much you earn and at what age, a plan is important to make your life easier. As your financial situation influences almost every aspect of your life, a regular financial plan can help give you peace of mind and protect you from unforeseen, unfavorable situations. Once you have a working personal financial plan, you can use it to make informed financial choices. Having a good financial plan will allow you an over view of what you can afford. It will allow you to analyze your wants versus your needs. It also provides you a way to see how to avoid major financial mistakes in the future.

Risks of not having a financial plan:

  • You may be able to achieve what you want today but might not be able to achieve what you need few years down the line. Say, if you buy a new car now, you might not have enough funds later to buy your dream home.
  • You may not see the big picture. Say, you may grow your wealth by making good investment choices but end up being tax inefficient and pay more taxes than you need to.
  • You may take a short-term view of an opportunity and make rushed financial decisions, or fall into some scam trap. Worst of all, you may end up doing nothing (and just thinking of doing something) and never achieve your financial goals.
  • You might become a victim of mis-selling and build a corpus of investment products that neither suits your financial needs nor your risk profile.
  • You are very much likely to worry more about money and financial security. You may not know where you are today and where are you heading for.

Tips for Effective Financial Plan

  • Be realistic with your investment returns; don’t plan to outperform the markets.
  • Account for market risk and don’t assume the same return to repeat every year.
  • Don’t forget to plan for inflation, taxes and your financial planner’s fees.
  • Review your financial plan regularly to see if you are on track or need any changes in the plan.

The need for financial plan is all the more very important in the turbulent economic times of today. If you don’t have one till now, don’t delay any more and Get it Now. Don’t be self-satisfied that you will be okay whatever happens. Face the reality. Unless you develop a financial plan early, it will be too late.

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Many people, it seems, have a fear of money. Does the thought of having a lot of money make you uncomfortable? Cause you anxiety? If so, it may be that you are buying into the myths about money. Myths that are simply untrue. In fact, many of the most common statements about money are often misquoted, wrong, or were made by people who did not understand money … or had none.

Let’s look at a few of the myths about money …

“Money is the root of all evil”

Everybody has heard this one. Unfortunately, it’s one of the most famous misquotes of all time. The original quote comes from the New Testament and the correct quote is “the LOVE of money is the root of all evil”. The love of money is an obsession and thus the true quote warns of the potential corruption that can derive from a love of, or obsession with, money (or any unhealthy preoccupation).. The fact is that money itself is neither good nor evil. It is neutral. Money can be used for good or it can be used for bad. How it is used is a choice, and the choice of how to use money is in the hands of he (or she) who controls it.

“Money is Power” (and Power corrupts)

Money itself has no real power. For instance, if you were legally given 10 million after-tax dollars in cash, put it in a safe deposit box, never touched it and never told anyone you had it you would have no more power than you do right now. The power of money comes from the use (or misuse) of it or the perceived benefit or threat by others. The money itself does not generate any power; it has to be converted into power. And whether or not you wish to convert money into power is a choice. And if one decides to convert money into power that power may be used for good or for evil, depending on the character of the person with the money.

“Money will change your life”

Let’s hope so! Used wisely, money can greatly ease many of life’s burdens and greatly enhance one’s life. Or, if you have a weak character, choose to live in fear and worry, you can let money make you miserable. It’s not the money, it’s YOU. The important thing to realize is that you get to control the money, it doesn’t get to control you. Want proof? Here’s how much actual control you have over your money – in the extreme, you can always give all the money away – and be rid of it. Just like that. You can give it all to charity, you can throw it out the window, you can walk down the street and hand it out. You can burn it all. It’s yours and you can do whatever you want with it, including give it away. Gone. You can make it all disappear if you choose to do so. That may be a stupid choice but that choice is always yours. That’s the ultimate power you have over your money and it rests in your hands. Money doesn’t ruin or change your life or change you or take control over your life. Unless you let it. And since you have the ultimate power to get rid of it why would you let it ruin your life?