What Is Good Asset Protection? Part 1

Rocco Beatrice
 


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ASSET PROTECTION DEFINED

Asset protection is the concept of protecting and preserving one’s assets from frivolous, illogical, ill-motivated, and more often than not, devastating catastrophic claims against your wealth, designed to destroy your current and future lifestyle. In short, they want what you've got and they want to inflict maximum pain.

ASSET PROTECTION HAS TWO PRIMARY GOALS:

1. To make the enforcement of judgments against your protected assets virtually impossible, and
2. To allow the “owner" of protected assets to retain engineered “control" over his assets

HOW GOOD ASSET PROTECTION CAN PROTECT YOUR PRIVACY

According the U. S Secret Service, identity theft is the fastest growing financial crime in America (source: the U. S. Secret Service). There are literally hundreds of ways to protect your assets. Some are just common sense. Don’t flash your money around; don’t talk too much at parties, etc.

By implementing a properly crafted asset protection plan, your creditor will have to jump through several hoops, before he even finds your money. Contingent-fee lawyer of what I like to call predators will want an easier target. So those that do nothing to protect their identity and their assets are easy targets.

There are approximately 950,000 lawyers. Just go through your own yellow pages. Most of them live on what they can squeeze out of you. Just don’t become a statistic. Learn from other people's mistakes. There are literally thousands of cases both famous and not so famous people who have learned this the hard way. Learn how to become every contingency-fee lawyer's nightmare.

HOW A CONTINGENT-FEE LAWYER CAN GET YOUR ASSETS

The Internet is spyware on steroids and can be used as invisible wealth snatchers. Information collection about you, your associates, your family, your finances has been compromised by the enhancement of data gathering technology through the internet. Even if you think you have nothing to hide your very basic privacy can be sold for a few dollars. If you search for “background check services" on Google, Yahoo or MSN you'll see what I mean.

How “paranoid" are you? How “paranoid" should you be? The problem is not the merchants collecting data about your spending habits. The problem is who's collecting the data without your knowledge and for what purpose are they collecting this private information?

A GOOD ASSET PROTECTION PLAN WILL:

- Protect your current and future lifestyle - Discourage litigation and promote settlements, in your favor - Keep the ownership of your assets confidential and hard to find - Eliminate the need of prenuptial agreements - Internationalize your investments as a hedge against the unexpected surprises - Spread out your control over your most valuable assets - Help you in getting a fresh start, if you ever became insolvent in any of your other assets - Hedge against potential political, economic, and personal instability

CHARTERED BLUEPRINT OF WEALTH PRESERVATION AND STEPS TO ASSET PROTECTION:

1. What are your financial goals? 2. Think about each of your personal/business assets that you need or wish to protect 3. Will there be domestic and/or international platform(s)? 4. Select the legal entities:

- Ultra Trust®

- Medallion Trust®

- Vertext Trust ®

- Limited Liability Company (LLC)

- Or Foreign Entities such as:

1. Foreign Limited Liability Company (FLLC)

2. Foreign Bank Account

3. International Business Company (IBC)

4. Foreign Asset Protection Trust

5. Foreign Security Trust

STEPS TO ASSET PROTECTION (EXPOUNDED):

1. Your financial goals should be:

i. Asset protection and wealth preservation

ii. Defer your Capital Gains Taxes

iii. Defer, reduce and possibly eliminate your Income Taxes.

iv. Eliminate “Probate Jail" and Eliminate ALL your Inheritance Taxes (i. e. Estate Taxes)

2. Determine your personal and/or business assets which may include:

- Personal residence

- Personal checking

- Certificates of deposits

- Investment accounts

- Broker stock accounts

- Other real Estate

- Life insurance policy(ies)

- Automobiles, boats, planes, collectibles, antiques

- Individual retirement account(s)

- Inheritance #1, Inheritance #2

- Business #1

- Cash, Accounts receivable, Inventory Equipment, Goodwill, Other assets

- Business #2

- Partnership interest #1

- Partnership interest #2

Note: Same planning applies for each of your business assets

3. What are your financial goals:

- Domestic and/or Foreign (International) asset protection and wealth preservation

- Your financial goal(s) of the already aforementioned. These could be in :

i. Protecting what assets and how do you wish to preserve your wealth. In other words, what precise goals do you wish for protecting your assets? There are a myriad of ways of accomplishing your asset protection goals depending primarily on your priorities. These can change over time as well and most often do change.

ii. Reducing your capital gains tax

iii. Defer, reduce or eliminate your income tax

iv. Eliminate the probate process and estate taxes

4. Domestic Platform(s):

- Irrevocable Trust or Revocable Trust

- Grantor Trust or Non-grantor Trust

- Living Trust

- Insurance Trust

- Personal Residence Trust

- *Ultra Trust®

- *Medallion Trust®

- *Vertext Trust ®

- Corporation

- General Partnership

- Limited Partnership

- Family Limited Partnership

- *Limited Liability Company (LLC)

- *Family Limited Liability Company (FLLC)

- *Customized Hybrids, i. e. LLC, Family LLC, Limited Partnership, Family Limited Partnership or General Parntership is owned by an UltraTrust®

* = My preferred structures

5. Foreign Platform(s)1 (please read note - 1):

- Foreign Bank Account

- International Business Company

- Foreign Asset Protection Trust

- Foreign Security Trust

- Foreign Limited Liability Company (FAPT)

- Offshore Uni Trusts

- Offshore Mutual Fund

- International Trading Company

- Multi-Currency Bank Deposits

- Swiss Annuities

- Foreign Credit Card

- Foreign Stock Trading Account

- Registered Foreign Office

- Registered Foreign Sales Facilities

I always state use “Good" planning NOT “Secrecy. " Rely on “Law" NOT “Secrecy. " What I mean is that one of your goals is to use full disclosure with the IRS. There is nothing illegal regarding the protecting of your assets and using prudent wealth preservation strategies.

1**Watch out for Foreign and Offshore Scams & Practitioners**

There’s a thriving industry of “offshore practitioners" advising IRS definition of “U. S. Person" to set-up offshore bank accounts and other financial structures thinking that they have “just become NON-U. S. Taxable. " They persuade the U. S. Persons to trust the “Iron-Clad" secrecy laws of the jurisdiction and not to report ownership of their funds or structures to the Internal Revenue Service and other agencies. This is pure and simple tax fraud and gets many U. S. Persons in trouble.

WARNING: The complexities of the U. S. laws require many tax reporting and other various reporting requirements. Protect yourself, make absolutely sure that you seek competent professional expert legal, accounting, and tax advice before you consider implementing your foreign asset protection plan. Contact Estate Street Partners and get the facts for proper U. S. reporting procedures.

author bio - Rocco Beatrice, CPA, MST, MBA
award-winning estate planning and trust expert
MS - Taxation, Master of Science Taxation
MBA - Management / Taxation
BSBA - Management / Accounting
CPA - Certified Public Accountant
-
Asset Protection: Irrevocable Trust
Part 2: Know These Facts of Asset Protection
71 Commercial Street #150, Boston, MA 02109
tel: +1.508.429.0011 fax: +1.508.429.3034

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