WHO WE ARE

About Us

Originally established in June 2008 by Managing Partner Traci Kaas, Kaas Settlement Consulting has partnered with The Settlement Alliance (TSA) to become TSA’s West Coast division, The Settlement Alliance-WEST. A complimentary approach to settlement planning set the stage for the partnership in July 2014. Rather than merely serving as structured settlement brokers, both companies share the fundamental belief that injured claimants deserve much more comprehensive assistance for their financial and medical needs. The merger with TSA provides The Settlement Alliance-WEST’s clients with greater access to a national network of reputable and highly rated insurance carriers, corporate trustees, and wealth managers.

EXPERIENCE

Our Settlement & Planning Expertise

Appraisal of complicated, multi-faceted cases involving:

Structured settlement annuities
Tax-deferred annuities
Lien resolution
Medicare/ CMS approvals
Special needs trust planning
Mass tort settlement resolution

Qualified settlement funds
Government benefits protection
Attorney fee deferrals
Estate planning issues
Philanthropy planning
Tax planning issues

Individualized settlement plan design for each claimant

Supporting attorney clients with litigation, mediations, settlement conferences, life care planning and present value cost evaluations at no cost to attorney or client

THE TSA-WEST TEAM

Traci Kaas, CSSC Managing Partner

TRACI KAAS, CSSC

MANAGING PARTNER
SETTLEMENT PLANNER
CERTIFIED STRUCTURED SETTLEMENT CONSULTANT
CERTIFIED FINANCIAL TRANSITIONIST®
CA License #0E33570

Toll-Free: (800) 354-2258
Office: (949) 441-5776
Mobile: (714) 335-4977
Fax: (562) 684-0470
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Traci Kaas is motivated to help clients make the most of their money and in turn, their lives. Traci uses her knowledge as a Certified Structured Settlement Consultant (CSSC) to help clients settle a broad spectrum of cases, from catastrophic cases like product liability or medical malpractice, to workers’ compensation, mass torts, and cases involving minors. Her breadth of experience also includes non-personal injury cases such as class actions, divorce, defamation, employment, the sale of business or property, and much more.

Armed with extensive and ongoing training as a Certified Financial Transitionist™ from the Sudden Money® Institute, Traci understands how to best navigate the technical and personal issues clients will experience during their financial transitions. Traci has found that thoughtfully and purposefully approaching each case on an individual basis results in the best, most customized solutions for clients’ personal and financial goals. Her areas of expertise include Structured Settlements, Special Needs Trusts, Medicare Set-Asides, Qualified Settlement Funds, Estate Planning, Tax Planning, Philanthropy Planning, and Life Care Planning.

Traci earned her Certified Structured Settlement Consultant (CSSC) designation in 2008 in conjunction with the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business. In addition to being a CSSC and a Certified Financial Transitionist™, her professional credentials include a Series 7/FINRA Securities License, Series 65/FINRA Securities License, Series 63/FINRA Securities License, and a Life and Health Insurance License registration for multiple states. She also maintains affiliations and memberships with Orange County Trial Lawyers Association, Orange County Women Lawyers Association, Orange County Bar Association, San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, Sudden Money® Institute, Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles, Consumer Attorneys of California, National Structured Settlements Trade Association (NSSTA) and the California Applicants’ Attorneys Association.

Traci believes that her business approach is best summed up with a favorite quote from Proverbs: “Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.”

Tanis Kelly, Esq.

TANIS KELLY, ESQ.

SETTLEMENT PLANNER

CA License #0K11354
Toll-Free: (800) 354-2258
Mobile: (415) 715-7946
Fax: (562) 684-0470
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Tanis Kelly is dedicated to helping plaintiffs and their families make the most of their settlements. Tanis joined The Settlement Alliance-WEST after attending U.C. Hastings College of the Law and practicing law for a number of years in San Francisco. During her legal career, Tanis litigated personal injury cases and saw firsthand how important it was for plaintiffs to have a caring, skilled professional by their side to help them plan for their future.

Tanis’ background as a litigation attorney is invaluable to attorneys and claimants alike. She has an in-depth knowledge of settlement planning and the nuances of government benefits and trusts. Attorneys can rely on Tanis to attend mediations, meet with clients, prepare personalized settlement plans and help clients understand their options. Tanis’ familiarity with the courts ensures that settlements requiring court approval will be approved quickly.

Tanis understands what her clients have been through and what they will face as their litigation comes to an end. Utilizing The Settlement Alliance-WEST’s national network of experts and business partners, Tanis is able to offer clients a broad array of options to maximize their settlement and ensure financial security for the future.

Tanis lives in San Francisco with her husband and daughter. She loves skiing and snowboarding, traveling and cheering for the Giants. She is a proud supporter of the San Francisco Bar Association’s Putting for the Pipeline charity golf event and likes to think of herself as a golfer, despite her horrible short game

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MARTI BRYANT

SETTLEMENT PLANNER

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Marti is an experienced financial advisor with a specialized background in tax planning. As a Settlement Planner with The Settlement Alliance-WEST, Marti utilizes her skills as a fiduciary to build solid Structured Settlement Plans for Plaintiffs. Whether it be through the use of a Structured Settlement Annuity or through additional unbiased income planning tools, you will rest assured knowing that your due diligence needs have been met.

Marti designs personalized settlement income plans based upon the claimant’s current situation while simultaneously focusing on future needs. Her experience as a tax advisor for over 20 years and as an Investment Advisor with oversight on more than $120 million in assets, Marti possesses the knowledge and expertise to create dynamic plans for all.

In addition to her work with claimants, Marti is also experienced in a range of areas, including tax advising, financial planning, retirement and income planning, and structuring attorney fees. She is committed to providing all of her clients with customized, trackable plans of the highest value.

An industry veteran, Marti has been invited to speak on a number of topics, including investing, estate planning, tax planning, and asset preservation strategies. Her writing has been published in the Wall Street Journal’s Market Watch and she was part of a financial team that was featured in Forbes Magazine. She co-hosted a financial talk radio show on 105.1FM and was interviewed on a television show called “The Consumer’s Advocate,” which was televised nationally on Fox, ABC, CBS, and NBC affiliates. In 2013, Marti appeared on a national television show called “Moving America Forward” hosted by William Shatner and Doug Llewelyn.

naomi duke

NAOMI HARVEY, CFP®

SETTLEMENT PLANNER

Chartered Special Needs Consultant™
Direct: (713) 893-4671
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Naomi Harvey, CFP® is a longtime advocate for individuals and families with disabilities. As the child of a parent born with a severe disability, Naomi witnessed the disruption that can occur as the result of ineffective legal and financial planning. As an adult, after a severe car accident left her mother with lasting physical injuries, Naomi made the move from patient education in the medical field to financial planning. Her determination to reinvent common day financial literacy informs her private practice and her work within the legal community. She is committed to educating clients on the various financial options that will improve their financial position and ultimately, their quality of life.
Naomi’s broad range of expertise includes governmental benefit integration, trusts, structured settlements, and custom financial strategies designed to meet the unique needs of injured claimants and their attorneys. She serves as an expert resource for attorneys, strategic partners, and court appointed representatives within the personal injury field. Naomi specializes in minor settlement cases, class action, mass tort, and incapacitated adult cases.
As an experienced professional speaker, Naomi is frequently tapped to speak in the legal and financial fields on a variety of topics, including ethical planning, legal issues involving the financial industry, trust funding techniques, special needs issues, and the effects of the changing financial landscape on client behavior.
Naomi is a member of the National Structured Settlement Trade Association (NSSTA) and has served on the Financial Literacy Committee sponsored by the FDIC & AALU. She holds her Series 7 and 66 licenses, and is a designated and practicing Certified Financial Planner (CFP®). Central to everything she does, Naomi is a proud mother to her daughter, Alyssa, a recent college graduate.

Joanna Schielein

JOANNA SCHIELEIN

SENIOR CASE COORDINATOR & EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT TO TRACI KAAS

Toll-Free: (800) 354-2258

Direct: (949)420-9244

joanna@alliance-west.com

Joanna joined ALLIANCE-WEST in 2016 as a Senior Case Coordinator and Executive Assistant to Traci Kaas. Prior to her role at ALLIANCE-WEST, Joanna worked in the legal industry for more than 15 years including 10 years at one of Orange County’s top personal injury firms. As a paralegal, Joanna was able to see firsthand the vital importance of settlement planning and the role it plays in the lives of injured claimants and their families. When an opportunity opened up to join the ALLIANCE-WEST team, Joanna eagerly jumped on board.

In her role as Senior Case Coordinator and Executive Assistant, Joanna assists with all aspects of the settlement planning process, including case management, answering claimant questions, assisting with government benefit preservation, and working with ALLIANCE-WEST’s attorney clients to complete petitions and orders for filing. She enjoys the broad scope of her position, which allows her to utilize her extensive legal experience to help clients move through the settlement process as smoothly as possible.

Joanna earned a BA in Social Sciences with a concentration in Pre-Law and a minor in Psychology from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. She holds her Paralegal Certification and is a member of the Orange County Paralegal Association.

Outside of work, Joanna is an avid equestrian who competes in three-day eventing. She resides in Orange County, California with her husband.