Kelley Rating (one asterisk = lowest, to five asterisks = highest):

  • Ease of navigation, design of interface and learning curve ****
  • Instructional documentation and help system ****
  • Carries out the goal of the product as advertised *****
  • Overall usefulness ****

 

Appraise-Web by Evaluation Services, Inc. provides securities valuations and cost basis calculations in a web-based environment without software installation.  You, or members of your firm, may access this service from any location. 

 

When you order Appraise-Web, you’ll be issued a username and password.  This application resides on the publisher’s servers and your portfolios may be stored on your computer or on the publisher’s file server.  Enhancements and corrections for Appraise-Web are continually added and eliminate the need for installing software upgrades.

 

Appraise-Web is available for date of death, alternate, gift tax and estate or trust distribution valuations.  All you need to generate an instant valuation is a credit card or account number, CUSIP/Ticker information (it accepts SEDOL numbers as well)and the shares/par value data. You can email completed valuations, in PDF format, without leaving the application. This service is designed as a pay-as-you-go service with no recurring fees. There are no downloads and they don’t store your credit card information.

 

What’s It All About?

Appraise-Web values securities according to the Internal Revenue Service rules automatically based on the mean price and accrued income of the securities to the date of gift or date of death and alternate valuation date and automatic adjustment for stock splits between the date of death and the alternate date.  Appraise-Web doesn’t allow for transactions between the date of death and alternate date, however. 

 

Appraise-Web allows you to input the cash, cash in lieu, distribution, exchange, fee, matured, merger, name change, redeemed, remark, reverse split, sold, spin off, split, transfer in and transfer out following generally accepted accounting principles.

 

Appraise-Web operates on tablet PCs, including Apple and Android, as well as conventional computers.

 

Reports can be emailed to yourself, associates or clients in PDF format.  Payment can be charged to a credit/debit card or you can be sent a monthly invoice.

 

You may create a global asset list of securities to be priced or do manual pricing.

 

Appraise-Web provides a broad range of securities and financial data from all major markets and exchanges, including equities, CMO’s, UIT’s, corporate bonds, municipal bonds and government bonds.  Stock dividends and stock splits are automatically included.  The manner in which the Evaluation Services products comply with IRS regulations is detailed at https://www.appraisenj.com/irsregulations.html.

 

How Does It Work?

A user name and password are required to enter you account.  You may create an account at the prompts on the opening page of the application.  The initial page that you enter when opening your account has a clean and simple interface.  A series of buttons on the initial screen lets you select among:

 

  • Add:  The prompts on this page request: Valuation Date, Valuation Type (Date of Death, Alternate Date, Gift Tax, Market Value or Closing Price), Estate/Portfolio Name, Cusip/Ticker/Sedol and Shares/Par Value.  You then click on the Add button to create a new portfolio for pricing the securities you entered. 
  • User Settings:  Select Yes or No to apply the Muni. Bond Price Method, Include DOD or not in the accrual, Apply splits during the alternate value period or apply Authorized GNMA values (whether the paydown factor is applied to mortgage backed securities).
  • Recent Portfolios:  You may open, price or delete a portfolio. Open brings up a matrix of the portfolio with a list of the items therein and columns of Tools (you may select Delete or Edit), CUSIP/Ticker/SEDOL, Shares/Par Value, Description, Valid Entry rating button (ratings appear as green for valid security, blue for a custom security stored in the Global Assets List and red for a security not in the database that can be made a custom security), Foreign Surcharge, CMO Surcharge, Basic Charge and Total Issue Charge.  You can add or insert a new securityin the portfolio.
  • New Report:  Takes you back to the initial screen, where you may fill in the required data and click the Add button to create a new portfolio and report.
  • Email:  You may email a portfolio to anyone you designate.
  • Copy:  You may create a copy of a selected portfolio may build a new portfolio using the copied information.
  • Import:  This facility allows import of data entered on an Excel spreadsheet.

 

To price a portfolio, from Recent Portfolios you click on Price Report.  From the screen that then appears you click on the Send button for pricing, which displays a report for the priced portfolio.

 

From Recent Portfolios that have been previously priced you may select View Report.  A report is then generated that includes:  CUSIP, Description, Shares/Par Value, Price Date, High/Ask Price, Low/Bid Price, Mean Price, Security Value and Accrued Dividend/Interest.  From this screen, you click Print View to generate a PDF file of the report.  The report is accompanied by an xls file that lists:  CUSIP Number, Ticker_Symbol, Shares_Par, Issuer, Securities Issue, Security_Type and Dividend_Ex_Dates.  From the View Report screen, you may also email the PDF file as you choose.

 

For valuation of a single security, you are prompted for Valuation Date, Valuation Type (Date of Death, Alternate Date, Gift Tax, Market Value or Closing Price), Estate/Portfolio Name, Cusip/Ticker/Sedol and Shares/Par Value.  You then click on the Add button. 

 

 

What About Help and Support?

A Help button on the initial screen provides a general explanation of the range and operation of this facility and from the Help screen, email support for usage and data questions is available.  A User Manual is included in the Help section.  At many of the selection prompts an explanation of the alternate selections appears when you mouse over the selection.  When you have created a report, the email feature allows you to also email HELPDESK with any questions you may have about the report.

 

How Do You Contact the Publisher?

APPRAISE-Web is published by Evaluation Services, Inc.  Contact information:

Evaluation Services, Inc.
180 Old Tappan Road
Building 4
Old Tappan, NJ 07675

Sales Information is available at : (888) ESI-4706

Website:  https://www.appraisenj.com/webappraise/

Pricing is listed on the publisher’s Fee Schedule at Appraise Web Service Fees.

Bottom Line

APPRAISE-Web provides an easy to use and easily accessible variation on the Appraise securities pricing service, with flexible payment provisions.  It provides quick and sophisticated securities valuation without local software.

 

Trusts & Estates magazine is pleased to present the monthly Technology Reviewby Donald H. Kelley—a respected connoisseur of the software and Internet resources wealth management advisors use to further their practices.

 

Kelley is a lawyer living in Highlands Ranch, Colo. and is of counsel to the law firm of Kelley, Scritsmier & Byrne, P.C. of North Platte, Neb. He is the co-author of the Intuitive Estate Planner Software, (Thomson – West 2004). He has served on the governing boards of the American Bar Association Real Property Probate and Trust Section and the American College of Tax Counsel. He is a past regent and past chair of the Committee on Technology in the Practice of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel.

 

Trusts & Estates has asked Kelley to provide his unvarnished opinions on the tech resources available in the practice today. His columns are edited for readability only. Send feedback and suggestions for articles directly to him at dhkelley@qwestoffice.net.