About Us

Estate Planners’ i Council

EPiC is a peer group or mastermind membership program designed to assist estate planning law firms on their journey from inception to exit, primarily through confidential participation in peer groups.

These peer groups consist of law firms similarly situated in experience, sophistication and business acumen.

There are 3 different peer group fits. 

  • Primary Driver groups consist of solo practicing estate planning law firms with up to 2 employees, revenue below ~$300,000 and where the owner attorney is primary in the sales, marketing, production, finance and administrative functions of the law firm. 
  • Business Operator law firms have 5 or fewer employees, revenue below ~$750,000, and multiple leaders controlling business operations (sales, marketing, production, finance and administration). 
  • An Enterprise Leader law firm has sales over ~$750,000 and more than two functional leads controlling business operations.

Each member has geographic exclusivity within their group as defined by their geographic marketing area (or they can waive the exclusivity) so as to foster sharing of information and collaboration.  A Primary Driver profile may join a Business Operator group; a Business Operator profile may join an Enterprise Leader group. Our facilitators will assess your needs and find the right group fit for your firm.

There are two different meeting formats:

Business Operator and Enterprise Leader groups attend regular two-day, in-person meetings hosted by a different peer group member firm on a quarterly basis. For Primary Driver groups, there is a monthly virtual meeting.

All meetings are scheduled and structured to promote collaboration between members, providing an arena for sharing information and creating solutions alongside peers to address core estate planning law firm operations.

These core operations include: sales and marketing; production of legal work product; finance and administration (including measuring and benchmarking); and strategic planning.  Collaboration and sharing efforts are supplemented by content and tools supplied by peers and peer group facilitators.

The facilitators are charged with assisting members in establishing achievable and measurable outcomes on a quarterly basis, for which members choose to be held accountable to by your peers.

Each peer group is paired with a facilitator to lead the sessions, bring content, facilitate exchange of tools, ideas and information, and to ensure that members engage in collaborative and informative discussion.


History

During a series of WealthCounsel continuing legal education classes being led by Thomas Fafinski in 2014, Fafinski mentioned his longtime participation with a local, non-industry-specific peer group in Minneapolis. 

Upon further discussion, Fafinski explained that he had been acting as the facilitator for 2 groups since 2008, and had been a member for years prior to facilitating.  One of the founders of WealthCounsel, William Conway, was intrigued by the notion of an estate planning law firm, industry-only peer group. 

Conway and Fafinski consulted with Stan Miller, another WealthCounsel founder, and approached WealthCounsel leadership with a beta test concept.  By 2015, WealthCounsel launched the peer group solution to 2 groups of attorneys with approximately 18 members and two facilitators – Thomas Fafinski and Nathan Nelson. 

Following the yearlong beta test, WealthCounsel approved the program’s continuation.  Membership in the peer groups grew, virtual peer groups were established, and the solution was featured at multiple WealthCounsel Symposiums. 

In 2020, with full support of WealthCounsel, 5 years of proven performance, 6 peer groups and continued momentum, Thomas Fafinski and Nathan Nelson continued the WealthCounsel Peer Group Solution as EPiC Peer Groups, branding the solution in accordance with comments by members, who described their participation in the peer group solution as EPiC!

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