What is Asset Protection Planning?
There are several levels of asset protection. You can protect your own assets from your own creditors. Also, you can plan to protect the assets that will be distributed to your beneficiaries. There are also several tools used for asset protection. Forming a corporation or LLC is one tool used for asset protection. Holding property in a trust is another form of asset protection. There are several variations of trusts, some provide current asset protection, and some do not. Some provide asset protection for the beneficiaries, some do not. The attorneys at Willi Law Firm can help you determine which type of asset protection tool or combination of tools gives you the level of protection that you seek.
Are Certain Assets Already Protected Without Doing Anything?
There are protections for certain properties. For example, in Texas, your homestead has strong protection against creditors. IRA’s have strong protection against creditors. However, some of these protections do not automatically transfer to your family when you die. You need an estate plan to keep the family farm in the family. You need an estate plan so that your child will not lose IRA funds inherited by the child if the child declares bankruptcy. These are real-world issues for which asset protection can be designed to address.
Is It Legal to Shield Assets Against Lawsuits and Creditors?
It is not only legal, but it is also a responsible way to handle your assets. If there is already a lawsuit on file, you may be facing other challenges depending on the particular situation. Sometimes a lawsuit affects how you can transfer property, sometimes it doesn’t. The best time to plan is before a lawsuit is filed.
Do I Really Need to Protect My Assets Even if I am Not Wealthy?
If you are not wealthy, and you lose something valuable to a creditor, are you more injured or less injured than a wealthy person? We help our clients make the decision about what needs protection and what doesn’t. Sometimes asset protection means that you focus on protecting your children’s inheritance. Most of the estate plans we create incorporate at least this type of protection. The children’s inheritance can be protected from their future ex-spouses, their future mismanagement of money, or their future creditors. This aspect of asset protection applies to most of our clients.
Is a Revocable Living Trust Sufficient in Terms of Asset Protection?
A revocable living trust provides no asset protection to you while you are alive. With the right drafting, it can provide asset protection for your spouse and/or your children after you die. At Willi Law Firm, we will work with you so you understand your options.
When is the Best Time to Start Asset Protection Planning?
We have designed very sophisticated estate plans for young families. The level of planning depends on a lot of factors. We have discussions on our website for each stage of life, from single with the first job to a senior facing long term care issues.
Can I Just Wait to Do It Until I Really Need It?
The “wait and see” approach will come back to haunt you. If you are reading these posts, you need to call us. We cannot tell you how many times we have had clients call to say, “Dad is not doing so great but I don’t have time right now,” and we try in vain to get the meeting set up for the estate plan. The next call we receive is, “Dad just had a stroke.” Sometimes we are able to still communicate with him, at least for a short time, to get some estate planning accomplished, and sometimes we have missed our opportunity and it becomes much more expensive for the family to manage his affairs while he is incapacitated.
What are the Steps Involved in Asset Protection Planning?
We want all of our clients to attend our free Estate Planning Workshop. Our goal is to educate our clients so that, ultimately, it is our clients telling us what they want rather than us telling them. You can sign up for a free Estate Planning Workshop on our website. Once you have attended a workshop, then we will schedule a vision meeting to address your specific situation. But you will attend that vision meeting with a better understanding of the tools we will be discussing.
For more information on Asset Protection Planning In Texas, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (512) 288-3200 today.