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Creating A Shortcut To The Brentmark Portal (iPhone/iPad)2020-08-20T16:13:14-04:00

How do I create an iPhone/iPad shortcut or icon to the Brentmark Portal?

Since the Brentmark Portal is already a web application, all you need to do is create a bookmark to the Home Screen of your device.  Follow these steps on your mobile device to create an icon on your Home Screen.

  • From Brentmark.com, select the main menu icon at the top right corner.
  • Select “Client Portal” at the bottom of the menu that opens.
  • Login to your Portal account.
  • Select the “Share” button at the bottom of your screen.
  • Scroll to the bottom and select “Add to Home Screen“.
  • Select “Add” at the top right corner of your Add to Home Screen bookmark.
  • Voila! Your icon should now appear on your Home Screen.

Review the visual reference guide below.  Please contact support@brentmark.com with any questions.

AFR Rate Table Not Available or Out Of Date2020-08-14T11:42:25-04:00

When I click on the AFR Table, a message appears that the AFR Rate Table is not available or is out of date. What can be the issue?

There are several reasons why you might see this message, and usually one of the following options resolves AFR display issues:

  1. Make sure you have a live internet connection
  2. At program startup, a threaded process is requested to our server to fetch the AFRDataPackage XML file that is used with several programs. It could be that the download, usually instantaneous, is still in progress by the time you clicked on a screen that uses the AFR information. If this is the case, waiting a few seconds usually renders the AFR table to display.
  3. The program requires that the current users has full read/write permissions to the location where the AFRDataPackage is downloaded. In most cases, this will be ProgramData\Brentmark\AFR. If the user does not have full permissions to this location, then the automatic download feature will not work, and you will need to manually move in the files once a month (usually posted around the 20th)
  4. Since the program interacts with files on our server, make sure your company firewall allows for “*.brentmark.com“. Most of the programs need to access brentmark.com and, in this case, a subdomain on ports 80 and 443.
  5. If none of the above resolve your issue, it’s likely that one of the data files that are downloaded (and then created) could be damaged. Navigate to ProgramData\Brentmark\AFR – there should be two files located here. a) AFR.xml b) AFRDataPackage.xml. In most cases, the timestamps should be the same – if they are not, then the AFRDataPackage.XML file did not create the AFR.xml for some reason. With the program not running, delete both of these files. After deletion, restart the program. At startup, the program should download and create the necessary files. You can also manually download the files by going to the ‘Edit’ menu -> AFR Rates -> Download AFR Data Package. If it’s successful, you should now have current rate table.
AFR Shows Current Table But Does Not Pull In Correct Rate2020-08-14T11:41:18-04:00

When I click on the AFR Table, it shows the current table. However, when I am on a screen that uses the AFR, it does not pull in the rate. What can be the issue?

There are several reasons why you might see this message, and usually one of the following options resolves AFR display issues:

  1. Each calculation screen has the ability to modify the AFR rate based on their own needs. By default, the program will use the transfer date to match up the §7520 rate used for the screen. If you have already saved data, or been on a screen, it will default to the value that was in memory, before the AFR file transfer occurred. However, any time you change the transfer date, it will force the program to retrieve the §7520 rate that goes with that transfer date. So, if you change the transfer date by a month, it should pull in a §7520 rate. Then switch it back to the original month you wish to use, and it should pull in that §7520 rate.
  2. If the problem still occurs, it’s likely that your AFR.XML file is damaged. See question above, solution #5
Cannot Use AFR Designated Folder2020-08-14T11:43:48-04:00

Older versions of the program used to allow me to designate a folder where the AFR file was to be stored. Why can’t I do this anymore?

With recent releases of Windows updates, it became harder to identify which file locations are allowed for users to access. The result is Microsoft Windows has put heavy restrictions on file locations, and this feature stopped working if there was not a valid file path allowed from Windows. Common practice is to put supplemental files in the ProgramData location, so this was adopted.

§7520 Rate Rounds On Screen2020-08-14T11:45:10-04:00

When I try to change the §7520 rate on a screen, why does it always seem to round?

The table that is shown in the program represents the 120% Mid-term Applicable Federal Rates. Most calculations in this program use the §7520 rate for the month, which is calculated by rounding the Annual 120% Rate to the nearest 2 tenths.

Limits For §7520 Rates2020-08-14T11:46:40-04:00

Why are the limits for §7520 rates 0.2% to 30%

When you see 30% returned for the §7520 rate, that is because there is no rate data for the transfer date entered. In most instances, this will be a “future” calculation. The user would enter a rational number for the §7520 rate. The IRS provides tables for calculations with the §7520 rate between 0.2% and 20%. The rates have never reached 20%, and only recently dipped below 1%. The 30% is an indicator to the user that they need to use their own rate (or that there is a problem with the AFR File as mentioned in the first 2 FAQs).

Additional Rate Tables Not Available2020-08-14T11:48:09-04:00

Why aren’t there additional rate tables, such as the short-term and long-term AFRs?

Currently, those rate tables are outside the scope of this program. We will look to incorporate such tables at some time in the future, but for now you can find them at https://www.brentmark.com/afr-rates/

My Customer Number Changed2020-08-14T11:53:18-04:00

Why has my customer number changed?

In early 2020 Brentmark moved to an online account management platform.  This new Brentmark Portal is a much more user-friendly and streamlined approach for both Brentmark and our valued customers to view and update their account data on demand without having to contact Brentmark directly.

Estate Planning Tools (Desktop) Download Instructions2020-08-24T16:04:44-04:00

While Brentmark is happy to announce the latest release of Estate Planning Tools (Desktop) v.2020.02.  Some of our customers may have temporarily experienced issues with logging into their Portal or downloading their copy.  If you are having a hard time retrieving v. 2020.02, please refer to these helpful hints.

If you have any further questions, please feel free to email Brentmark at support@brentmark.com or call us directly 803.781.9595.

Download a copy of this information file.



If you received an email directly, you already have an account created for you.

In May 2020, you were sent an email with your username and password.

  • Your username is your email address.
  • The password can be reset using the “Lost Your Password?” link that is located on the sign in page, AFTER you click on the “Client Portal” blue button.
  • Do NOT create a new account.



View More Information On How To Login To The Brentmark Portal.

The landing page you should have visible will be the Portal Dashboard.

  1. Locate Estate Planning Tools (Desktop App) on the Portal Dashboard.
  2. Locate and select the button labeled “Download”.
    • This will download the file “Estate_Planning_Tools_202002.zip” to your browser’s download folder.
  3. Once the download is complete, select the “Estate_Planning_Tools_202002.zip” file listed in your Downloads folder.
    • This will unzip the file and begin running the installation.



The Brentmark Client Portal supports most modern browsers.  Internet Explorer 11 is currently supported, but it is highly recommended to use Microsoft’s Edge in place of Microsoft Internet Explorer 11.  Chrome, Firefox, and Safari are also supported.

Brentmark is thrilled to have recently released Estate & Charitable Planner LIVE, which is a web-based application that COMBINES ALL of the models from Charitable Financial Planner (Desktop) and ALL the models from Estate Planning Tools (Desktop).  Additionally, there are several models that are centralized around the SECURE Act which are not available in either desktop program.  If you are interested in this application, individual and enterprise licensing is available.   Feel free to email Brentmark at sales@brentmark.com for an account review.

View More Information On Estate & Charitable Planner LIVE.

Desktop applications can only be downloaded and installed on Microsoft Windows Operating Systems (unless you are using a third-party tool such as Parallels for Mac).

Web-based applications, such as Estate & Charitable Planner LIVE, work on all platforms, but do require a modern browser.

Accessing The Brentmark Portal2020-08-14T14:47:14-04:00

How Do I Login To The Brentmark Portal?


In May 2020, you were sent an email with your username and password.

  • Your username is your email address.
  • The password can be reset using the “Lost Your Password?” link that is located on the sign in page, AFTER you click on the “Client Portal” blue button.
  • Do NOT create a new account.

Here is a visual guide to logging into your account.

Step 1: Go to www.Brentmark.com and select the “Client Portal” blue button.

Portal Login Step 1


STEP 2:  Enter your login information and select “Login”.

Portal Login Step 2



STEP 2:  On the portal login screen, select the “Lost Your Password?” link directly under the “Login” button.

Lost Password Step 2

STEP 3:  Enter your email address and select  the “Reset Password”.

STEP 4:  Check your email for a link to complete your password reset.

Lost Password Step 3 and 4

SECURE Act Updates – January 20202020-08-14T14:24:37-04:00

What were the 2020 SECURE Act updates?

Download this information file.

Program Updates:

Updates to our desktop programs became available January 2020. LIVE products are updated at release and do not require individual updates. All LIVE program updates made on the server and immediately and seamless available to users.


Programs Affected:

Retirement Plan Analyzer

Retirement Distributions Planner

Retirement Distributions LIVE

Charitable Financial Planner LIVE

Estate & Charitable Planner LIVE


Big Changes:

  1. Beginning 01/01/2020, the RMD start age increases from 70.5 to 72. Anyone born prior to 06/30/1949 will continue their RMD schedules (they already have started based on the old rules). Anyone born 7/1/1949 and later will have their RMD start at age 72.
  2. For Inherited IRA’s where the plan owner dies on or prior to 12/31/2019, no changes are in effect and the pre-Secure Act rules are in place. There are no changes to inherited IRAs for non-spousal beneficiaries. Thus, those plans will continue to use the pre-Secure Act rules, allowing for Stretch IRA’s.
  3. For Inherited IRA’s where the plan owner dies on 01/01/2020 or later, all non-spouse beneficiaries will be required to have the distributions paid out by year 10 of the anniversary of the plan owner’s death.

There are exceptions. This is the exemption criteria: 

  1. The spouse is the beneficiary.
  2. The age difference between plan owner and Inherited IRA beneficiary is no more than 10 years.
  3. The beneficiary is disabled or chronically ill.
  4. The beneficiary is a legal minor child of the plan owner, in which they will use the old rules until they reach the age of majority for their state.
Programs Affected by The SECURE Act2020-08-14T14:22:46-04:00
Product Comparison Guide2020-08-14T15:05:16-04:00
Performing A Silent Install/Uninstall2020-08-17T11:16:02-04:00

We install programs on our network through SCCM.  How can I perform a silent install?

At the command prompt window, enter the following:

<setup.exe> /s

How can I perform a silent uninstall?

At the command prompt window, enter the following:

Installing Multiple Licenses2020-08-17T15:22:42-04:00

How do I install multiple licenses?

If you have multiple licenses, you will see the ability to download an installation for each license.   There is no need to download multiple licenses, if this is going to be installed on a network.  You can download one instance, and allow access to the number of users you have licensed.
If you need additional licenses, please contact support@brentmark.com
Navigating The Brentmark Portal (Video Tutorial)2020-08-26T13:09:13-04:00

The following video tutorial will walk you through accessing and navigating the basics of the Brentmark Portal.

This video includes how to download Desktop applications and launch LIVE web applications.


Downloading Additional Copies Of A Product2020-08-18T16:13:39-04:00

How do I download additional copies of the product I just purchased?

Brentmark only allows each customer to license and download one copy of each product.  This does not include updates, as those are available for download automatically.

If you have a special circumstance that requires additional downloads, please contact support@brentmark.com.

If you are interested in additional or enterprise licensing, please contact sales@brentmark.com.

Downloading URLShortcut.zip File (Windows)2020-08-21T14:17:43-04:00

I am creating a Desktop Shortcut for my Microsoft Windows machine.  How do I find the URLShortcut.zip file?

You may download it here:


Creating A Shortcut To The Brentmark Portal (Windows)2020-08-21T15:21:22-04:00

How do I create a Desktop shortcut or icon to the Brentmark Portal on my Windows machine?

Follow these steps on your machine device to create a shortcut or icon on your Desktop.

Download The Illustrated Guide.

            (You can also access this file through it’s individual FAQ post.) 

  • Once you have downloaded the file, go to your “Downloads” folder.
  • Locate and double-click the file downloaded (URLShortcut.zip). 
  • Unzip to extract the file contents.  There are 2 files, both need to be extracted for the shortcut to be created. 

OPTION 1: (Preferred) 

Select the “Extract All” button along the top toolbar.

OPTION 2: (May Not Be Supported On All Windows Versions)

Select “Extract All” on the secondary form that appears.

  • Select the location destination for the extracted files. 

                 Windows likely will give a location suggestion.  This can be changed (if you so choose) by using the “Browse”  button.  

  • Once you have chosen a file destination, click on “Extract”.
  • Double click the “URLShortcut.bat” file. 

* NOTE:  This will run a Windows Batch file, that will create a shortcut to the login page, and will use the included   “BrentmarkLogo.ico” file as the image.  Windows may give you a warning that your machine is going to run a batch file.  

If this happens, follow these steps:

  • Select “More Info”. 
  • Select “Run Anyway”.
  • A paused command shell (black screen with white text) will appear detailing that a shortcut was created.

The “Portal” icon and shortcut with the Brentmark “B” should now be on your desktop. 

* NOTE:  If the image icon or shortcut does not appear, restart your machine allowing Windows to correctly assign the image to the shortcut. 











Navigating Estate & Charitable Planner LIVE2020-08-26T15:00:49-04:00

The following video tutorial will walk you through accessing and navigating the basics of Estate & Charitable Planner LIVE (web application).

This video includes how to customize reports and load data files.

PFP Notebook Database Management Utility2020-09-30T17:34:57-04:00