Asset Protection Planning from Judgements and Creditors
Protect Your Financial Future
Asset protection is defined as a type of financial planning intended to protect one’s assets from creditor claims. Individuals and business entities use asset protection techniques to limit creditors’ access to certain valuable assets while operating within the bounds of debtor-creditor law.
Asset Protection Planning from Lawsuits and Divorce
Asset protection planning is proactive legal action that protects your assets from future creditors, divorce, lawsuits or judgments. This involves a series legal and lawful techniques that can deter a lawsuit. … Most importantly, it can help prevent the seizure of your assets in the event of a judgment.
Let’s assume you are blessed with significant assets. Your home, your car, and your retirement accounts all might seem mundane, but they have significant value. Unfortunately, many people do not understand the value of their assets until another person or entity tries to take those assets away.
Our society is increasingly litigious. Even when accidents occur, there is often a feeling that somebody has to shoulder the blame and responsibility, and that someone often happens to be the individual with significant assets.
We employ legal strategies that can provide insulation between you and your assets, while still allowing for the lifestyle you have worked very hard for.
How to Minimize Asset Liability
You try to do the right thing, follow the rules, and live a respectable life. Unfortunately, accidents happen and all of us make mistakes. Just like that, you may find yourself on the defensive line of a lawsuit.
There are over 19 million new lawsuits in the U.S. every year. While many people associate “frivolous lawsuits” with personal injury claims, most forget that legal actions like a divorce or a business-related claim are far more likely to impact their lives and put their assets at risk.
Additionally, many individuals with significant assets forget that the acts of family members or those who could be perceived as employees or agents may also expose them to personal liability.
When the IRS, a creditor, or a plaintiff’s attorney wants to find money, they can and will track down every possible connection which leads to you. Altman & Associates can help you create a structure which protects your livelihood.
How To Use Legal Tools to Protect Your Assets
At the core of any asset protection plan is a professional and legal examination. An expert can assess one’s financial situation, assets, risks as well as personal or family goals.
Asset protection planning consists of taking one’s entire situation into perspective. The legal and financial vehicles used range from insurance policies, state homestead protection laws, business vehicles and estate planning instruments. More involved cases often include multiple legal jurisdictions in foreign countries where the laws are more favorable to the defendant or debtor.
Counsel from an experienced legal advisor is critical when protecting your assets because they have the necessary knowledge and the ability to create legal structures. We work with you to place your assets in legal entities which are distinct from you. Common legal strategies for protecting assets include:
- Forming a corporation or other distinct legal entity to represent your business. Entities like corporations, limited liability companies, or limited partnerships are legal entities formed to ensure that you and your business are separate under the law. This is especially true when it comes to distinguishing between business and personal assets.
- Employing estate planning and unique processes. Basic estate planning techniques can help define ownership of assets and protect both you and your family’s future. We can take this process further and utilize tools like dynasty trusts in debtor-friendly states to preserve what you have worked so hard for.
- Dividing and assigning assets appropriately. Your personal assets should be there to assist you and your family. Your business assets are part of your business. Balancing the two assets to reflect your business activity’s necessary support of your personal life, and shielding those assets from their respective activities, is not an easy balancing act. We will help you understand where your exposure is, and how you can strengthen your legal structures.
If you do not have a comprehensive plan that addresses your liability exposure, then your assets can and will be subject to the grip of future creditors.
Expert Asset Protection Planning Attorneys
Protect your assets. You can do it, and the Maryland asset protection attorneys at Altman & Associates will show you how. We have convenient office locations in Columbia and Rockville. Contact us by phone at (301) 468-3220 or online to schedule a consultation today.
Don’t Be A Target
It’s sad, but true: In today’s litigious society, any number of people may want to take hard-earned assets away from you and your children.
This is especially true if you happen to be landlords, physicians, attorneys or business owners because statistically these professions are subject to an inordinate number of lawsuits.
Over 19 million new lawsuits are filed in the United states every year, many are frivolous and many are settled out of court. We don’t see the trend declining but rather growing as it has done over the past few decades. Children who have been divorced or carry a large amount of debt are also extremely vulnerable to lawsuits.
In addition to our asset protection expertise in estate tax planning, our attorneys are experts at working with clients to protect their assets against potential litigation, judgments, liens and fraud.
By utilizing numerous legal techniques and strategies available we are able to preserve our clients’ wealth and safeguard their assets from the risks of divorce, litigation, and future creditors.
Such techniques may include dynasty trusts, limited partnerships, childrens’ trusts, and domestic and offshore trusts established in debtor-friendly states such as Delaware and Alaska or other offshore jurisdictions.
Benefits of Asset Protection Planning
Assets Free of Judgements
After establishing a proper plan, a legal opponent or creditor will recognize that you are no easy target. Little to no assets are within reach of a judgment. This puts the debtor in a powerful position. This can deter a lawsuit, or in the event of a lawsuit or litigation, provide substantial negotiation leverage.
Financial Privacy of Ownership
One of the first benefits of implementing simple legal vehicles to protect assets is privacy of ownership. You can own real property and other forms of wealth privately, which reduces your “visible” net worth which in turn reduces risk of frivolous lawsuits or a predatory legal attack.
Shielding Assets from Creditors
Our expertise includes assisting clients in arranging their finances, real property and assets in a manner that minimizes any potential litigation exposure. We carefully analyze your insurance needs, create estate plans and organize your investments and business entitities so that you are able to enjoy and practice your profession with minimal interruption.
Assets owned by a properly structured trust, foundation or other entity are generally not subject to claims and also provide the additional benefits of removing those assets from the taxable estate.