Most people have created an estate plan including a living trust for the purpose of avoiding probate court and administration delays for their family members and loved ones. This is a very smart estate planning tool to protect your loved ones from the unnecessary cost and delay of probate court where only lawyers make a bundle of money in legal fees.
However, for many people, such as doctors, lawyers, professionals, general contractors, real estate investors, and families with high net worth and personal liability exposure in their business activities there is a vital need for more than basic estate planning. Such people need and understand the value of asset protection planning as part of their estate planning portfolio. ALTA Estate Services specializes in all forms of estate planning and asset protection planning.
There are many forms and vehicles available to you should you desire such asset protection. Such examples include the following:
- Many family members have children or loved ones with special needs. Such families need to protect their assets for the benefit of family members with special needs to avoid the government “spend down” or liquidation of their hard-earned assets. There are such asset protection trusts commonly known as the Special Needs/Supplemental Income Trusts. These types of trusts allow for you to leave your assets to your child or family member with special needs so that they can inherit and benefit from the inheritance of your estate when you pass away as well as protect and preserve these assets from government spending down. In addition, your loved one with special needs will be able to retain any and all government benefits under all federal and state programs. While this program may not be for everybody, such asset protection is absolutely a home-run and great option for families fitting into this fact pattern. ALTA Estate Services is proud and humbled to have served and continue to serve the special needs community for over 20 years. Our knowledge care and experience have proven to be a valuable resource to the families we represent in this particular area of practice.
- For those clients that are involved in any business involving the general public such as real estate contractors or developers or any other business in which you deal directly with the general public, it is essential that you consider protecting yourself and your individual assets from any potential liability/lawsuit involving such business activities. A limited liability company (LCC) is a useful entity to protect you and your assets from personal liability exposure from any lawsuit arising from the business. LLCs provide asset protection to you, your family, and all your personal assets from lawsuits under the business LLC. This asset protection is commonly known as the “corporate veil of protection” should be utilized by every person involved in any business involving the general public. ALTA Estate Services specializes in business and asset protection planning as well as general estate planning. When conducting business with the general public it is critical to have your business structure set up correctly from the beginning. ALTA Estate Services provides a free consultation to review your business and asset protection needs as well as the best tax planning to minimize your business tax liability.
- The family limited partnership is one of the most powerful asset protection vehicles available to professionals in protecting their net worth and estate assets from creditor attacks. The benefit of this program lies in the strength of the law supporting this asset protection program. While most asset protection and estate planning authority come from state statutory, and common law, the family limited partnership is supported by federal code and Supreme Court case law. This law is the highest law of our country and therefore is solidified in stone as to the asset protection benefits available under such a program. Local courts cannot override this asset protection program. Therefore your assets are guaranteed to be protected from creditor attack. This program is particularly beneficial to lawyers, doctors, and licensed professionals such as general contractors, electricians, and engineers where there remains personal liability exposure from any lawsuit arising out of any business activities. The family-limited partnership will provide the asset protection you desire.
- There are many other similar asset protection vehicles available to you to meet your specific asset protection needs and desires. It is critically important that you work closely with an estate planning and asset protection professional who understands the benefits of each particular program that best fits your asset protection needs. We have personally witnessed so many people in court facing lawsuits that can cause the complete loss of their entire estate assets. We’ve seen the fear and anxiety in their faces when they realize the risks they are facing. Setting up a program such as described above for each need and future risk will avoid this potential devastating hardship. You should contact our office at 520-797-1400 at your earliest convenience for our free consultation to further discuss these options and benefits available to you for your future asset protection and estate planning goals.
If you are interested in protecting your assets from potential creditors, call us to schedule an appointment to learn if the FLP is an appropriate estate planning strategy for you.
Feel free to call the ALTA Estate Services, LLC office at (520) 797-1400 to learn more about proper and complete estate planning, including the Emergency Telephone Hotline Program afforded to you and your family members at no charge during times of crisis and the other benefits of estate planning described above. Mark Fishbein, Tucson AZ.
The text above is for general informational purposes only, and should not be considered as legal advice.