Merrill Lynch

Nelligan & Associates

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Merrill Lynch
Wealth Management

We’re committed problem solvers who savor the opportunity to make a real difference in clients’ lives.


Nelligan and Associates is a Merrill Lynch Wealth Management team headquartered in Chester, New Jersey. Speak with us for a few minutes, and you’ll notice something different. Our work is a vocation and a passion. 

A team of veteran advisors, we combine experience, ethics, and exceptional service to help clients move from where they are, to where they want to be.  We’re like a financial “GPS,” lending direction and clarity to life’s crossroads and decision points.

Our principals—Joe Nelligan, Mike Barna, and Jim Bumstead—bring decades of real-world experience in wealth management, investing, accounting, business, and engineering.* We’re skilled in circumventing the pitfalls and remedying the gaps that clients typically encounter. At the same time, our work is intensely personal. Committed listeners, we work to discern a client’s past, present, and future, so that we can better address their goals and needs.  

We don’t sugar-coat our advice. We’re in the business of helping people – not telling them what they want to hear. Our process is grounded in purposeful action, committed discipline, and long-term thinking. In a world characterized by instant gratification, we help clients develop an actionable plan to resolve confusion, enhance clarity, and make steady progress toward meaningful objectives.

Intergrated Advice

We serve a varied clientele. Each of us is well versed in multiple aspects of wealth management, applying our knowledge of complementary disciplines. If a client has a problem or question, we’ve likely seen it before. We offer the insight that stems from years of direct experience. And we leverage the research, best practices, and technological edge of an industry leader, Merrill. Our team structure allows us to pool ideas and intensify our coverage, amplifying our value and differentiating our approach. 

We’re privileged to serve as the “go to” resource and first phone call for a range of needs:  

Individuals, couples, and families:
- Retirement planning
- Investment management
- Long-term care evaluation and selection
- Higher education savings
- Trust and estate planning services
- Access to home financing and lending through Bank of America, N.A.

Business owners and professionals:
- 401(k) design, development, and servicing
- Succession planning
- Business monetization
- Evaluation of new acquisitions and opportunities 

- Concentrated and restricted stock strategies
- 10b5-1 Plan design, development, and servicing
- Access to securities-based lending through Bank of America, N.A.
- Portfolio diversification

Disciplined Process

Our team offers a refined skill set. We’ve attained certifications in planning and retirement strategy, deepening our understanding of the key issues that clients encounter. And we continue to expand our knowledge base, completing professional education to stay apprised of the strategies and tactics that can potentially benefit our clients.  

As investors, we believe in three core tenets: (1) simplicity; (2) disciplined growth; and (3) long-term asset preservation. We capitalize on the research and offerings at Merrill to develop customized investment programs, reflecting each client’s distinctive goals, timelines, preferences, and risk thresholds.  Our longevity and continuity as advisors have provided us with a maturity and perspective that don’t shrink during times of crisis. We’ve seen booms and busts, bull markets and bear. Whatever the environment, we look to avoid trends and group-think so that we can provide clients with a reliable investment process we’ve honed over many years.

*Any information presented in connection with BofA Global Research is general in nature and is not intended to provide personal investment advice. The information does not take into account the specific investment objectives, financial situation and particular needs of any specific person who may receive it. Investors should understand that statements regarding future prospects may not be realized. BofA Global Research is equity research produced by BofA Securities, Inc. (“BofAS”) and/or one or more of its affiliates. BofA Global Research does and seeks to do business with companies covered in its research reports. As a result, investors should be aware that the firm may have a conflict of interest that could affect the objectivity of this report. Investors should consider this report as only a single factor in making their investment decision.

Tailored Services

Service is the foundation of our work; it’s what makes us excited to tackle each new challenge. What other people view as headaches, we see as opportunities – to educate, resolve, and move forward. Our Wealth Management Client Associate, Rob Velcko, helps foster the warm and welcoming environment that characterizes our office. Resolute in tracking down answers, Rob is a linchpin of efforts, streamlining each client’s financial life. As a team, we don’t wait for issues to magically resolve. We anticipate, and then we act. 

Empathy and approachability are two of our core values. When clients call our office, we pick up our own phones; we want to speak with them, whether it’s a crisis or a small question. We feel privileged to help clients and the people they care about. That’s why referrals constitute so many of our new relationships. We work hard to earn that trust, every day. 

Each client is an integral member of our professional family. We’re deeply entrenched in their lives – from milestones and triumphs, to difficulties and challenges. Through regular meetings and ongoing discussions, we stay apprised of changing conditions so that we can better respond to their needs. Clients recognize that we care deeply about them, pursuing their best interests with a rigor and reliability that testify to our deep-seated passion for what we do.

Meet the Team

Supported by the global resources of Merrill, our team is comprised of talented and experienced individuals committed to building strong client relationships based on trust and personalized service.

Staying on Track

We understand that both your life and the financial markets can change over time. By checking in to discuss changes in your life and revisiting your financial approach, our goal is to help you stay on track to achieve what's most important to you.

Reviews to help you
stay on track

We’ll meet with you to review your goals and the progress you’ve made toward reaching them. We’ll also discuss any adjustments needed to your financial approach to help you stay on course.

    Changes in your life
    and to your goals

    Your life and goals change. As these changes occur, we can update your approach to reflect them.


    MyMerrill is your online destination for access to your financial information, secure communications, and a robust offering of tools and capabilities.

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    Access to your complete financial life is available with My Financial Picture, Merrill’s asset aggregation tool

      Let’s Have a Conversation

      Helping you reach your goals starts with getting to know you personally. Through understanding what matters most to you, together we can help you create a financial approach that reflects your personality. Only then can we offer an approach that is built around your life priorities and the advice you need to help you address fluctuations in the market and changes in your life. Let’s work together to help you achieve your goals.

      Why Merrill?

      As Merrill Lynch Wealth Management Advisors, we will sort through the financial complexities of your life, helping you build a customized investment approach to address your needs and pursue your goals.


      We put you first, every day.
      Learn more about the dedicated one-on-one relationship you can have with a Merrill Lynch Wealth Management Advisor.

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      Transcript of Video 

      No question too big or moment too small
      For every question you have, every decision you make and every answer you need, we are with you to listen and help guide you along the many paths your life can take. Watch this video to see some questions we can address together.

      The Power of the Right AdvisorTM
      Working with a dedicated Merrill advisor means you get personalized investment strategies from Merrill plus access to comprehensive financial solutions only Bank of America can deliver.

      Personalized advice from a dedicated financial advisor.

      We get to know you and your family, your financial situation and what matters most to you.

      A comprehensive approach, built around your life’s priorities.

      Drawing from our experience and the best thinking of Merrill, together we will design an approach that reflects your unique needs, priorities and financial situation.

      Adjusting your investment approach as your life and the markets change.

      We will work to help you stay on track, regardless of what the markets are doing.