Asset protection is a key aspect of estate planning and Elder Law. Regardless of the size of the estate, using pragmatic legal strategies, the Law Office of Stephen J. Silverberg helps families protect assets from outside attacks. Depending on the situation, the plan may incorporate trusts, limited liability companies, family limited partnerships, and other sophisticated and tax-efficient tools as needed.
Our clients vary in the size and scope of the assets they seek to protect. This includes people who own a single home to entrepreneurs who have amassed significant wealth to individuals and couples who seek to preserve, protect, and transfer wealth passed down from multiple generations.
Asset Protection and Trusts
Trusts are not one size fits all. The trust used for asset protection differs from one focused on asset distribution, or preserving assets for a Special Needs individual. Our firm works with clients to determine which trust is more effective for their protection and which is more likely to withstand or prevent predatory or litigious actions.
Asset Protection and Tax Planning
Protecting assets must include planning for tax efficiency. Creating an asset protection plan, only to lose a hefty percentage of those assets to taxes, defeats the purpose of asset protection. Clients benefit from the firm’s extensive background in tax as it intersects with estate planning.
The firm uses complex and sophisticated tax planning to protect assets from tax liabilities in the short and long term. We are skilled in the tax and estate laws in New York State and Florida and stay up to date on legislative and regulatory changes, which informs our client representation. Recent frequent changes to these laws make the use of online forms to create trusts or navigate tax shelters risky.
Asset Protection, Family Dynamics, and Business Relationships
Asset protection includes planning for internal family rifts or disputes with business partners – or both. Attuned to the issues that occur in the realms of family and business, the firm draws on decades of experience with family and business disputes. The underlying philosophy is the best plans are ones that prepare for worst-case scenarios. Our clients’ wealth is simply too important to practice otherwise.
An asset protection plan often uses specialized trusts. There may be family members who are not capable or unwilling to manage significant assets. The plan may include spendthrift trusts, domestic asset protection trusts, or dynasty trusts. Each situation is different, and the firm customizes each asset protection plan to the family’s needs.
Asset Protection and the Professional Advisor
The Law Office of Stephen J. Silverberg works closely with members of the family’s team of advisors. It communicates with clients and often serves as sounding boards for the issues a family must address in their planning. Drawing on the knowledge of other professionals, the firm ensures that all aspects of the plan mesh and are sensible and productive. The professionals must work together to ensure that all aspects of a plan are aligned.
Asset Protection and Wealth Transfer
Protecting and administering family wealth works hand in hand with transferring wealth. Each estate plan must reflect the family’s values and overall objectives, and is customized to achieve several goals: reduce the taxable estate tax, enhance charitable giving, and facilitate wealth distribution.
Asset Protection and Litigation
We live in a litigious society, and individuals with significant wealth are often a target of frivolous lawsuits. Often, assets fund trusts, limited partnerships, or other ownership structures to dampen these lawsuits. This provides the peace of mind knowing that the family and beneficiaries are protected.