Houston-based Capstone Associated Services, Ltd. has announced a program to acquire the U.S. captive management portfolios of captive insurance management firms, continuing the operations of the captives currently under Capstone’s robust umbrella. Capstone is optimistic about what lies ahead for the industry and continues with its expansion efforts.
Capstone’s interest in acquiring books of captive management businesses began when Capstone was approached by a captive management organization to assist in the design, formation, and ongoing management of its clients’ captives.
Capstone Associated Services, Ltd. is pleased to announce the addition of Daniel Calderon as Vice President - Operations. Mr. Calderon moves into this leadership role as Jeff Carlson, who had served in this role since November 2017, transitions to President. Mr. Calderon brings over 20 years of strategic & operational planning, customer relationship management, and process improvement experience to Capstone.
Mr. Calderon brings over 20 years of strategic & operational planning, customer relationship management, and process improvement experience to Capstone. In his role as VP - Operations, Mr. Calderon provides oversight of insurance, accounting, compliance, and risk management.
Reserve and Capstone respectfully disagree with the Court’s opinion and in particular the Court’s reliance in deciding this case on the Avrahami opinion. Reserve had no loans, participated in a diversified pool, assumed unaffiliated, third-party reinsurance, reported and paid substantial losses, and had policies that were designed to meet the needs of the underground mining business that it insured.
Additionally, a series of recognized experts, including an insurance commissioner, two credentialed actuaries, an independent auditor, a nationally-renowned insurance economist and an underwriter, all testified on behalf of Reserve with scant testimony from the government’s witness whose testimony the government admitted was discredited on the stand.
June 13, 2018 (Houston, TX) - Earlier this month, Capstone's CEO & General Counsel, Stewart A. Feldman gave an interview with Captive.com about several key issues affecting the captive insurance industry.” In a featured interview, Mr. Feldman discusses the ongoing IRS scrutiny of captives, the enduring benefits of a well-designed, well-managed captive, and the steps prospective captive owners can take to ensure a successful captive arrangement.
Mr. Feldman also discusses why "it takes a village" to properly design, form, and manage a successful captive insurance company.
March 8, 2018 (Houston, TX) - On April 5th, Capstone's CEO and General Counsel Stewart A. Feldman led multiple round table discussions at the Inside Self-Storage World Expo at the Paris Hotel & Resort in Las Vegas. Approximately 3,600 self-storage industry participants attended the event.
Feldman's discussions focused on captives as a strategic risk mitigation tool for middle market, self-storage businesses. Also addressed was the revenue-generating potential of the planning for facilities' owners.
March 8, 2018 (Houston, TX) - As part of its ongoing captive services, Capstone's management met with regulators at the Anguilla Financial Services Commission (AFSC) last month. Jeff Carlson, Head of Operations, was in attendance on Capstone's behalf. The 3-day visit entailed an informational session with AFSC's Director, Gerry Halischuk and members of the AFSC regulatory team. During his visit, Mr. Carlson also met with Commercial Registry Director Lanston (Lance) Connor, Deputy Director, Lonnie Hobson, and with Fiona Curtis, Resident Manager of Capstone Insurance Management (Anguilla), Ltd.
February 6, 2018 (Houston, TX) - Capstone Associated Services, Ltd. is honored and pleased to announce its 20-year anniversary. Since 1998, Capstone has been the leading captive insurance service provider for middle market businesses in the United States. The Houston-based company continues to evolve with the dynamic captive insurance industry and the ongoing management needs of its clients.
Team Capstone has been recognized by industry peers, including captive-industry publication Captive Review with its Power 50 and Enterprise Risk Pioneers lists of top influencers.
Capstone’s CEO and General Counsel, Stewart A. Feldman commented, “We are extremely proud of the fine work that Team Capstone has accomplished over the last 20 years, with operations led by its president, Charles Earls.
January 26, 2018 (Houston, TX) - Capstone Associated Services, Ltd. is pleased to announce the addition of Jeff Carlson as its Head of Operations. During 2018, Mr. Carlson will become Capstone’s President with Charles Earls, its founding president, stepping down after 20 years. Capstone is industry-recognized as the most integrated and comprehensive captive sponsors in the U.S., long recognized for its true turnkey planning. Mr. Carlson brings over 25 years of insurance management experience, focused on property & casualty, life, and health insurance operations. Additionally, he holds both the CMA (Certified Management Accountant) and CPA designations.
November 27, 2017 (Houston, TX) - Capstone Associated Services, Ltd. is proud to announce that it has expanded into the U.S. southwest region, with the addition of Clete Thompson, MBA, a 7-year veteran with Capstone. Mr. Thompson returns to Capstone as Vice President of Business Development, where he previously served as Director of Sales & Marketing, after a four-year hiatus. Mr. Thompson is a seasoned sales and marketing executive with over 20 years of experience at both Fortune 500 and middle-market companies.
October 16, 2017 (Houston, TX) - On September 27-29, Capstone participated in The Florida Institute of CPAs' Annual Accounting and Business Conference as a featured speaker. The conference was held at the Broward County (Fort Lauderdale) Convention Center and streamed online for remote viewing. Tax attorneys Coby Hyman and Stewart Feldman with The Feldman Law Firm LLP gave an hour-long presentation on "Alternative Risk/Captive Planning."
October 5, 2017 (Houston, TX) – Capstone is proud to announce that it has again bolstered its talent with its newest team member, David Osbourn, CPCU as Director of Business Development - Northeast. Mr. Osbourn becomes the 6th CPCU at Capstone, all of whom are engaged in client projects. This team's depth is unparalleled in the captive industry. Mr. Osbourn brings to Capstone over 35 years of broad insurance industry experience, including property & casualty, reinsurance, and captives. His primary role is to help expand the Company’s reach in the Northeastern / Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States.
September 5, 2017 (Houston, TX) – The U.S. Tax Court ruled on August 21st against captive owners and jewelers Benyamin & Orna Avrahami in its long-anticipated case, Avrahami v. Commissioner (149 T.C. No. 7). Long-established, industry leader, Capstone reports, “The Tax Court’s opinion is a primer on poorly designed and weakly implemented alternative risk structures. If there were a captive team in place for the Avrahamis, it appears not to have evaluated or operated the planning to any meaningful degree.
August 30, 2017 (Houston, TX) - Houston-based Capstone Associated Services, Ltd., one of the largest and oldest captive managers in the U.S. serving the mid-market, reports that it is still up and operating, despite catastrophe on the Gulf Coast.
“We are fortunate that our planning and disaster recovery worked without a hitch,” said Stewart A. Feldman, Capstone’s CEO & General Counsel. “We never lost power or internet and our team, spread throughout the greater Houston-area and more generally throughout the U.S., has continued to work without interruption.
August 27, 2017 (Houston, TX) - Thank you for your concerns regarding the widespread news coverage of the serious weather events along the Gulf Coast. Both Capstone and The Feldman Law Firm LLP’s offices are located in a major office complex, occupying the 19th floor of a twenty-five story, well-vetted building. The worldwide headquarters of two Fortune 2000 companies are based in our office complex, along with many divisions of large international corporations.
August 2, 2017 (Houston, TX) - Lance McNeel, Vice President of Business Development for Capstone Associated Services, Ltd., addressed members of the Asian American Hotel Owners Association (AAHOA) at its North Texas annual meeting in Dallas on August 1, 2017.
February 7, 2016 (Houston, TX) - Industry publication, Captive Review, named Capstone's Vice President - Operations, Megan M. Brooks, ARM to its Power 50 "One to Watch List." Brooks was recognized as an up-and-coming industry player who is expected to play an increasingly influential role in the captive industry.
Brooks works closely with Capstone's President and COO, Charles B. Earls, CEO and its General Counsel, Stewart Feldman, along with The Feldman Law Firm LLP, in managing Capstone's operations.
"2016 has been exceptional for Capstone and the Firm," commented Brooks. "I'm proud of our Company's work in helping clients navigate important legislative and regulatory changes last year. From tax and regulatory to insurance and accounting, Team Capstone works collaboratively to offer the most comprehensive captive services in the industry. I'm honored to have been named to the "One to Watch List" and look forward to continued success in 2017."
January 11, 2017 (Houston, TX) - Industry publication, Captive Review, today announced honors for Capstone and its CEO and General Counsel, Stewart A. Feldman, for their work in the captive insurance industry.
Earning a spot on its 2016 Enterprise Risk Captive (ERC) Pioneers List for the second time, Feldman received recognition for being one of the top 20 U.S. persons involved with mid-market captive insurance. "I am honored to receive this recognition once again by Captive Review with my inclusion onto its Enterprise Risk Captive - Pioneers List," said Feldman. "This recognition is a testament to the ongoing commitment that Capstone and The Feldman Law Firm LLP have to our clients -- providing industry-leading, comprehensive captive planning services.
January 4, 2017 (Houston, TX) - Capstone welcomes Steven Lonergan, CPCU to its team as Director of Business Development - Midwest. Lonergan brings over 30 years of insurance, reinsurance, and captive experience to Capstone.
Lonergan is based in the greater Minneapolis area, expanding Capstone's local presence into the Midwestern markets. “We’re excited to have Steven on board to assist clients on captive insurance / alternative risk planning opportunities,” commented Capstone’s CEO, Stewart A. Feldman. “Steven brings a wealth of captive insurance knowledge to our company, bolstering our talent pool. Capstone will continue to hire the industry’s best professionals to spearhead our turnkey captive programs.”
Changes to Valuation Discounts in Estate Planning
September 27, 2016 - The IRS recently announced its plans to eliminate many valuation discounts which had been available for decades in minimizing estate tax through the use of family limited partnerships and related planning techniques. There remains a limited window of opportunity which the IRS is seeking, after many years of trying, to eliminate by year end.
If you have considered undertaking estate planning, or have in place a family limited partnership, your immediate attention should be given to these likely expiring provisions. The existing $5.45 million per person unified credit ($10.9 million per married couple) combined with planning techniques presently available (e.g., family limited partnerships, defective (grantor) trusts), make the currently available range of tools especially effective. The Service seeks to change this by year-end.
June 28, 2016 - Capstone Associated Services, Ltd. has again strengthened its bench responding to the 2015 Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act, otherwise known as the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2015. The December 2015 act imposed significant ownership restrictions for Internal Revenue Code Section 831(b) electing captives, and significantly increased the cap on premiums, calling for major restructuring of many captive insurers.
The Feldman Law Firm LLP, Capstone's affiliated law firm, proudly announces that Kenneth Anderson has joined its practice, to focus on restructurings necessitated by the 2015 PATH Act and other captive insurance corporate matters
Capstone, U.S. Advisors, and Munich Re to Host Florida Symposium
June 21, 2016 - Capstone announces its joint sponsorship along with U.S. Advisors and Munich Re, of a 3-city healthcare symposium this month in Florida. The focus is on medical providers who assume capitation risks for medicare patients. Typically, the capitation provider has many thousands of patients for which the provider is "at risk" financially for medical services.
Capstone will present information about its successful design and implementation of a captive strategy for capitated providers operating under the Affordable Care Act. Questions? Contact Lance McNeel at WEB_TEL.
Capstone Named Finalist for Captive Review's 2016 Services Award
July 15, 2016 - Capstone Associated Services, Ltd. is pleased to announce that it has been named a finalist for Captive Review's 2016 Services Award for Best Captive Management for Enterprise Risk Captives.Captive Review chose Capstone from among captive managers throughout the U.S.
Team Capstone was recognized by Captive Review in 2015 as a Top 20 Captive Industry Pioneer. Capstone's CEO was also recognized in 2014 as the 26th most influential authority in the captive industry.
June 20, 2016 (Houston, TX) - Stewart A. Feldman, CEO and General Counsel for Capstone, was a featured speaker at the American Institute of CPAs' Conference on Tax Strategies for the High Income Individual, held May 23-24, 2016 in Las Vegas, NV. More than 500 CPAs were in attendance from across the U.S.
Mr. Feldman's presentation addressed the pitfalls and complexities in implementing captive insurance/alternative risk planning and his experience with more than 55 captive audit and tax matters over the last two decades.
May 31, 2016 (Houston, TX) – Capstone Associated Services, Ltd. proudly announces that it has been approved as a captive manager by the Texas Department of Insurance. This is the 8th jurisdiction where Capstone is licensed. “With the recent favorable state legislative changes, the captive insurance landscape in Texas is changing. Texas is now advancing as an acceptable domicile for the mid-market,” commented Stewart A. Feldman, CEO and General Counsel for Capstone. “Texas has not traditionally been a recognized captive domicile.
May 23, 2016 (Houston, TX) -Team Capstone welcomes Paula Little, CPA as the newest member of its nationally recognized, captive management team. Ms. Little brings 25 years of tax experience to Capstone's already deep bench. At Capstone, Ms. Little is the liaison on federal and state tax-related matters with the tax and corporate lawyers at The Feldman Law Firm LLP. Over the last 18 years, Capstone has taken the lead in almost 200 captive formations, making it one of the largest, mid-market captive managers in the U.S. It is the largest independently-owned, turnkey captive management operation serving the middle market.
May 16, 2016 (Houston, TX) - Capstone is pleased to announce that David Overbeck, Director of Insurance Operations, has earned the prestigious designation of Chartered Property & Casualty Underwriter (CPCU). This achievement, plus his existing certifications and experience, further demonstrates Overbeck as an industry expert in risk management. Overbeck has over 17 years of insurance experience, including holding a certification as an "Associate in Claims" in the property & casualty areas.
February 8, 2016 (Houston, TX) - Capstone Associated Services, Ltd. is proud to announce the promotion of Megan M. Brooks, ARM to its executive management team as Vice President - Operations. In her new role, Brooks will work closely with Capstone's President and COO, Charles Earls, CEO and its General Counsel, Stewart Feldman, along with The Feldman Law Firm LLP in managing Capstone's operations.
In furtherance of Capstone's continued growth, Brooks will concentrate on continued team coordination and maintaining quality control. As Team Capstone's national client base continues to expand, the ability to benefit from the exchange of ideas among both team members and clients becomes even more important and is a key part of Brooks' focus.
“I look forward to continuing to work with Megan in her new role. This promotion is in recognition of her initiative and leadership, as evidenced by her work with Capstone over the last decade," commented Capstone President Charles Earls
Capstone Makes Captive Review ERC Pioneers List
December 22, 2015 (Houston, TX) - Capstone's CEO and General Counsel, Stewart A. Feldman earned top accolades this week by the industry publication Captive Review, making the "Enterprise Risk Captive (ERC) Pioneers" List. The list recognizes the top 20 in the captive industry in the United States. Last year, Capstone and Stewart Feldman were recognized as #26 of the top 50 in the captive industry worldwide.
The middle market is the fastest-growing segment of the captive insurance industry, and Capstone, along with its affiliated law firm, The Feldman Law Firm LLP, is leading the charge for higher standards in captive planning.
"We're excited to have been recognized once again by Captive Review and by the larger captive community as being a leader in the alternative risk planning space," said Stewart A. Feldman. "As the industry evolves, we will continue to demonstrate excellence and sophistication in the design, implementation, and ongoing management of captives. Team Capstone appreciates the recognition."
"Smaller captives" are generally defined as those writing less than $1.2 million in annual premiums, allowing them to qualify for the IRC 831(b) tax election. With the new tax legislation enacted by Congress late last week and signed by the President immediately thereafter, the annual premium limit will rise to $2.2 million in 2017 while ownership by multiple generations has become muddled.
November 10, 2015 (Houston, TX) - In response to continuing inquiries, Capstone Associated Services, Ltd. along with its affiliated tax law firm, The Feldman Law Firm LLP, announces a new program enabling prospective captive insurers to leverage the Firm's extensive tax controversy experience. The Firm now offers audit defense and tax controversy services for captive insurers managed by third parties in select situations.
"For the last 17+ years, we have successfully guided captive insurers administered by Capstone through IRS audits, IRS Appeals and the U.S. Tax Court," states tax attorney, Logan R. Gremillion. "The Firm offers its services on a case-by-case basis to those who are involved in varying stages of tax controversy with the Internal Revenue Service in the captive insurance area. Our Firm is leveraging our decade-long experience and our excellent track record in captive tax issues.”
Capstone Associated Opens New Atlanta, GA Office
Capstone Associated is pleased to announce the opening of its new Atlanta-area office. As part of its Southeastern expansion, William "Bill" Blankinship, CIC, CRM, has recently joined Capstone Associated as its Southeastern Director of Development, heading this new office.
With a focus on high-deductible, workers compensation, and P&C coverages, Blankinship is providing Southeastern-based middle-market business opportunities for tailored coverages written through their own captive insurance company, along with realizing the ancillary benefits of the planning.
"Capstone Associated is continuing its 17+ year track record of providing exceptional turnkey captive planning to clients across the United States, now with a local presence in Atlanta," commented Stewart Feldman, CEO and General Counsel for Capstone Associated. "By having boots on the ground in Atlanta and soon in other areas, Capstone Associated is furthering its ability to deliver quality services throughout the U.S. We already boast clients from the Canadian to the Mexican borders and from the Atlantic to the Pacific coasts."
Blankinship added: "The Capstone team of tax, legal, financial, and insurance professionals – all under 'one roof' – is unique in the captive industry, allowing Capstone Associated to provide top-tier support to clients, wherever they operate. Both the breadth of Team Capstone's experience and its track record in delivering successful, compliant planning is unmatched. Unlike other so-called 'captive managers,' Capstone Associated, in combination with The Feldman Law Firm LLP, takes responsibility for the many aspects of the planning, including the all-important state and federal tax, regulatory, legal, financial and insurance areas. This comprehensive approach is evident in Capstone's long track record of successfully implementing and operating captive insurance companies."
Since its beginning in 1998, Capstone Associated in combination with The Feldman Law Firm LLP has formed and operated in excess of 175 separate captives, drawing upon its Houston-based, headquarters staff, with additional offices in Delaware and in The Valley, Anguilla.
Capstone Associated is currently interviewing for senior managers for planned offices in the upper midwest and on the west coast.
Bill Blankinship Joins Capstone
August 20, 2015 (Houston, TX) - Capstone welcomes Bill Blankinship, CIC, CRM to its team as Director of Business Development - Southeast. Blankinship brings over 30 years of senior-level property & casualty insurance experience to Capstone, with a focus on high-deductible and workers compensation, along with a P&C, risk consulting, and risk finance background.
Blankinship is based in Atlanta, GA and expands Capstone's existing services in the Southeastern markets.
"We're excited to welcome Bill to our existing business development team, where he will join with Lance McNeel and others in educating clients on captive insurance/alternative risk planning opportunities," commented Charles B. Earls, Capstone's President.
Blankinship holds both the Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC) and Certified Risk Manager (CRM) professional designations, both demonstrating his knowledge and expertise within the risk management and insurance sectors. Bill co-founded two Atlanta-based insurance brokerage firms and also served as a senior business development executive and client advisor at global brokers Willis Group and Marsh Inc.
"In just the last few weeks, we've already seen the benefits of having Bill Blankinship on our team," commented Capstone's CEO Stewart A. Feldman. "We are excited about building and strengthening relationships with middle-market clients in the southeastern region."
Bill Blankinship holds an AB in Journalism, Management, and Political Science from the University of Georgia in Athens, GA.
Capstone Welcomes Sharanda Davis Back
August 25, 2015 (Houston, TX) - Capstone is pleased to welcome back Sharanda Davis as Insurance Assistant after a year-long sabbatical. Ms. Davis had a several-year stint as part of Team Capstone, supporting the insurance underwriting and claims handling functions along with coordinating professional training initiatives.
"We are excited about Sharanda's return," commented Stewart Feldman, CEO and General Counsel. "She had been instrumental in the administrative and training functions for Team Capstone. We're looking forward to working with her again."
Ms. Davis will reinforce Capstone's commitment to continuing professional education. This ensures that Team Capstone remains abreast of changing tax and insurance law and changes within the insurance market.
"We are glad to have Sharanda back with us," explained Charles B. Earls, Capstone's President. "She is already up to speed, smoothly handling her new and prior duties."
Ms. Davis began her career at Traveler’s Insurance, handling a variety of client issues as an initial point-of-contact, capturing loss details and claim information. Ms. Davis streamlined front-end procedures, providing information to the organization’s processing team. Ms. Davis went on to serve in other support roles, leveraging her administrative support experience.
Sharanda Davis holds a Bachelor of Science from Texas Southern University.
Capstone Nominated in 3 Categories for U.S. Captive Services Awards
July 29, 2015 (Houston, TX) - Capstone is proud to announce that it has been named a finalist in three separate categories for the U.S. Captive Services Awards by the trade publication Captive Review! The Capstone team made the shortlist for:
- Best Captive Manager
- Best Customer Care in Captive Management
- Best Independent Captive Manager
The Captive Manager of the Year award recognizes the best captive management firms, exhibiting evidence of business growth by revenue, client numbers, service offering and headcount and above all client satisfaction. The winner of this award would have demonstrated a diverse product offering and solution-based services, advances in the use of technology, accessibility to clients, initiatives developed/implemented in the last 12 months and overall business growth.
The Independent Captive Manager of the Year award recognizes captive managers that are not related to a larger parent company (e.g. an international brokerage firm). Judging criteria for this award includes the assessment of activity over the last 12 months and for the highest standards of customer care and satisfaction, excellent reporting processes and access to the team, innovative ways of managing clients' risks and insurance structures, and clear examples of efficiency.
The Best Customer Care in Captive Management award recognizes captive management firms that have demonstrated how their service offerings have improved clients’ business functionality and access to information and reporting. Those recognized have provided clients with valued customer care, improved efficiency and knowledge, expertise and accessibility to the team.
July 16, 2015 (Houston, TX) - Capstone congratulates Megan M. Brooks for achieving the distinguished "Associate of Risk Management" (ARM) designation. Ms. Brooks, Vice President, Operations, at Capstone, successfully completed her final coursework and passed the last of her examinations on risk management.
The ARM's comprehensive curriculum includes the mitigation of operational, financial, and strategic risks along with financial statement risk analysis, and capital & financial risks.
Ms. Brooks recently completed a Certificate in Accountancy awarded by the Bauer College of Business at The University of Houston, and is currently preparing to sit for the CPA exam in 2015/2016. Other Team Capstone members with the ARM certification are Lance McNeel and David Overbeck. Mr. McNeel is also a Chartered Property & Casualty underwriter.
Ms. Brooks works as part of a dynamic team at Capstone. Her team members possess a wealth of insurance knowledge and expertise.
Captives Cover Uninsured Risks for Businesses
Texas Lawyer Roundtable Series on Insurance
Capstone Participates in Annual CICA Conference
IC-DISCs: Capstone Associated Addresses AHMI members
Capstone Meets with Anguilla's Governor, Captive Regulators
Captive Health Checkup is Now Available
Capstone's Feldman Named #26 on World Wide Captive Power 50 List
The Feldman Law Firm LLP Announces New Services to Captive Insurers
Capstone Associated Services Ltd. Announces Formation of its 150th Captive
Capstone Forms Local Captive Insurance Subsidiary
Capstone Announces $400 million in Approved Dividends
Capstone Announces Opening of Trading of the Largest Canadian IPO of 2007
Five Questions with Stewart Feldman
Capstone Opens Office in Delaware
Capstone Maintains Local Presence in Anguilla
Capstone Breaks Captive Insurance Record in Delaware
Capstone's Feldman Named Top Captive Pioneer 2016
CPCU Joins Capstone's Insurance Team
Capstone Makes Captive Review ERC Pioneers List