The real questions we should be asking ourselves are, “What is Asset Protection Planning?” “What assets are we protecting are we protecting anyway?” and “Who are we protecting our assets from?” Once we ask the right questions, we can find answers to your questions.
What is Asset Protection Planning? Asset Protection Plans will protect your hard-earned assets, such as real estate, investments, businesses, stocks, bonds, cash, and so forth. A properly prepared asset protection plan can protect your assets from Taxes, Lawsuits, the State (when there is a skilled nursing home involved) and other creditors! The correct Protection Plan can keep your business running profitably, while your competitors are going out of business.
We all know that we now live in a litigious society. We all have worked hard, saved and skimped in order to have something left when we are ready to retire, so we can live a comfortable life. Then out of the blue, someone else wants what you have. It could be a neighbor who slips on your lawn, or the tax man that has a new tax, or the state who wants to take your house because your spouse goes on Medi-Cal. I know that you don’t want to lose your assets which you have poured your blood, sweat and tears into, all to a creditor or to more taxes - again - or to the state, or even to a non-frivolous lawsuit where your insurance coverage is found less helpful than expected.
So, who needs asset an Asset Protection Plan? Anyone who is paying more taxes than they should be paying, someone who has had uncontrollable circumstances because of medical issues that cannot be afforded.
We all need some type of an Asset Protection Plan. We all need to do what we can to keep what is ours.
Therefore, what do you need to do to create a real working useful Asset Protection Plan? You need to prepare by utilizing all or some of the 4 Plan’s of Protection and here they are:
First, you need a working, funded, Estate Plan. This could be the use of Wills, Trusts, Powers of Attorneys, or Advanced Healthcare Directives and other such documents. In probate, you could lose all of the equity in your house, or the house itself! In addition, there are those who may, or not be related to you that may feel that they should have what you have, taking if from your family and loved ones. You can only stop them by having a working, valid, estate plan that insures that your family is taken care of after you are gone or if you become incapacitated. This is not something that comes from a computer program (whether yours, or an inexperienced or lazy attorney’s, or a Trust Mill’s who just fills in the blanks on a generic document) nor a “Do it yourself book or program”. Protect your family and your future with a qualified attorney who knows the law and how to take care of you and your family’s specific needs.
Second, Use Business Entities in which to do your business, or to hold your assets and money, sometimes several Entities to shield you from your assets, to shield your assets from you, to protect your assets from other of your assets, or protect your assets from the State, and to shield your money from excess taxes. Sometimes a simple Corporation or a Family Limited Partnership may do, sometimes more will be needed. Only a practiced and experienced legal practitioner will know what is best for you, your business and your family.
Third: Know the laws. Know how to work within the framework of the law, while taking advantage of the rules they provide. Know how to do things legally yet effectively. Study and work with those who can help you do what is necessary to take advantage of every tax exemption you can, to hold your assets in a way that will discourage or deter creditors and the State. Find out what is the best way to hold your assets, which states they should be held in, and where you have to pay taxes, and where you do not.
And Fourth: Always act ethically. Do what is right, know the rules you are required for you to follow. Don’t give up assets to others you do not have to give them to. Don’t follow a crowd that is living a mediocre life, because they will not take advantage of the laws given them. Be Legal, be Truthful, but don’t be a fool.
Following these Four Plans of Protection and you will be in charge of your life again, will be the hero to your family and the one who keeps the business running. You will live a secure and confident life, without having to worry about what is happening in your life, or in your business or in the world. Confucius once said, “You can influence the world only if you first cultivate your influence of your Community, your Family and your life.
Prepare now. The Law office of Beyer, Pongratz, & Rosen, a Professional Law Corporation, has been helping Businesses, Families and Individuals in California and throughout the US bring the peace back into their lives for over a quarter century by providing Cost effective and Professional Legal services.