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Comprehensive and effective estate plans for affluent clients may not be complete without the inclusion of their personal property assets. Jewelry, artworks, antiques, rugs, silver, important decorative furnishings, as well as clients' special collections, (whether they be rare books and manuscripts, stamps, coins, sports memorabilia or even vintage toy train sets) are all part of the asset base.

RPAA routinely provides estate planning professionals with two appraisal documents: one for insurance purposes, at estimated current retail replacement prices, to protect the assets for replacement after a loss, and a second appraisal at fair market values, to enable accurate estate planning for pass-through, establishing basis, and so forth. Regarding insurance, RPAA is widely known to, and trusted by the insurance industry. We are referred by Chubb, ACE, Fireman's Fund, AIG, and others specializing in insuring the affluent. These carriers, and several national insurance brokers who also refer us know RPAA's appraisals will be accurate and defensible. In effect, claims are pre-settled, and the clients are made whole.

Why would all these highly respected and well established companies refer RPAA?

Because we are the only personal property appraisal firm:

1. With a nationwide Group Practice, in all categories of personal property (except marine).

2. Which has created underwriting and claims training educational courses, and presented them to EVERY affluent-oriented insurance company.

3. Which presents continuing education training programs for insurance agents (we have conducted these sessions in over 20 cities in America).

4. To create and utilize an advanced spreadsheet report format, which provides more detail yet requires less space.

5. With four associates who are authors of college-accredited, professional appraisal courses.

6. To be asked by major underwriters to create inflation factor percentages, to provide insurers with additional scheduled property protection.

Our Group Practice approach enables us to appraise confidently in all personal property categories (except water-going vessels). Beyond the artwork, sculpture, jewelry, rugs, silver and decorative furnishings, we are proficient at the appraisal of fine wine collections, rare books and manuscripts, stamps / coin collections, sports memorabilia, vehicles and ephemera.


RPAA undertakes all sizes and manners of estate settlement appraisals. No project is too large for our experience.

1- Project with 24,000 items /overseeing distribution and liquidation. This very recent project encompassed the contents of 14 houses within 3 locations. Art, sculpture, furniture, rugs, millions in jewelry, decorative furnishings, china, crystal and porcelain figurines, a vast haute couture collection, high-end vintage and modern purses and the equipment for a retail store were just part of this project. The Summary Appraisal Report was delivered on time. The IRS review is complete and no questions arose for a single item in our appraisals. This project is on-going because the Trustees have requested we handle the equitable distribution of the personal property, and oversee the liquidation of some items.

2- A Midwest project with three locations within the same city. This project was dominated by an extensive silver hollow ware collection, as well as rare marine lithographs, some antique furniture, very rare porcelain table service from the 1700s, a partial table service once owned by George Washington, and ancestral portraits.

3- An East Coast project in Washington D.C. The large home contained hand painted murals (removable), French chandeliers and Impressionist paintings, truly rare French silver flatware, faience and antique furniture. The country home was packed with Victorian - the furniture, hair art, portraiture, rugs, rare books, etc. A second home on the country estate was furnished entirely in French turn-of-the-century motif, including trade signs, rare French faience, tapestries, and a Grandma Moses painting . RPAA also appraised the horse saddlery and tack as well as antique carriages.

4- Projects with Contentious Parties. Several years ago we undertook a very high profile and contentious estate tax settlement appraisal in the East Bay area of northern California. A national media spotlight was focused on events surrounding the project. There were five homes at three sites and approximately 20,000 items for individual appraisal. RPAA was asked to also manage the equitable distribution of the personal property, including nine million dollars in jewelry. While we could not create harmony between the heirs of this vast estate, the IRS did not issue a single change order for this project. These examples are meant to show RPAA's capabilities, load capacity and broad expertise. However, we will undertake estate settlement projects of any size.

Roger Ponn Associated Appraisers, LLC



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