Asset Protection

asset protectionAsset protection is a broad term which includes legal terms that affect you very personally.  Most people believe that if they own things, they’d like to keep them – or at least have their intended beneficiaries keep them.  Are you comfortable with your assets going to your daughter’s ex-husband?  Would you be okay with your cash assets being taken away in a lawsuit because someone was injured on your rental property?  We help you to legally protect your assets from creditors and predators.

IRA Inheritance Trust

Planning for IRAs and retirement plans involves Federal income tax law, Federal estate tax law, Federal ERISA law, and asset protection law.  A stand-alone retirement plan trust is funded at your death with your retirement assets to maximize the benefits under all of these laws, and it is designed to handle only your retirement assets.

A retirement plan trust is a unique tool that can allow for “stretch-out” under IRS rules, control over assets after you’re gone, and provide creditor protection to your loved ones.  Each individual beneficiary can use their life expectancy in determining the required minimum distributions, and the assets remaining in the trust continue to be considered IRA assets by the IRS.  This means that your beneficiaries can continue to take advantage of the tax deferred growth of your retirement assets.  We will counsel you in determining if this trust is right for you.

Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust

An irrevocable life insurance trust is a separate trust designed to hold life insurance policies and administer the life insurance proceeds after death.  It is an irrevocable trust and its terms cannot be materially changed or terminated after it is set up.  If it is properly designed, an irrevocable life insurance trust can provide your loved ones with liquidity after your death, and keeps the proceeds out of your estate for estate tax purposes.

Limited Liability Companies

A limited liability company is an entity under state law that offers limited liability to its owners (known as members), and also provides maximum flexibility under federal income tax law.  LLCs may be manager-managed or member-managed.

We help you title your assets in an LLC so that it is much easier for a creditor to go away rather than hang around making your life miserable.  Asset protection is not something that may be accomplished during a crisis.  If you have already been sued, there is not much you can do to avoid liability.  If a wrongful act has occurred, and even if you have not been sued yet (and may never be sued), there are limits to the actions you may take to avoid liability.  If nothing has happened, and there is not a hint of impropriety, there are many actions you can take to help you avoid future creditors.

Ideal asset protection does not mean that you will never get sued.  It means that your creditor recognizes that it will be much easier and more lucrative for your creditor to settle than to file a lawsuit.  That’s what you want.  Asset protection planning allows us to help you provide you and your loved ones with a heightened sense of security and comfort.