Family Office Law (FOL) offers assets protection and insurance solutions designed to benefit small- to medium-size business owners because they are often most exposed to law suits. The FOL lawyers know that businesses often need to keep their capital at work in the business. Whenever reasonable, we guard against moving assets offshore or into trusts that restrict business investments.
FOL legal documents are created with help from its affiliated design and administration firms. A plan design uses flowcharts, spreadsheets, project management timelines and legal document descriptions to show the benefits of asset protection planning. Having a clear plan design helps clients see how asset protection planning integrates with income tax, estate tax, insurance, investment, and business succession planning. Our integrated solutions can exempt both earnings and private assets for retirement, but also exempt assets in transfer to the next generation to avoid unnecessary taxes and creditor exposure across the generations.
Very few advisers have experience designing, drafting, and administering asset protection documents. The FOL staff members are available to assist CPAs, lawyers and other professionals with proven asset protection solutions.
We offer exemption planning that is a safer and more secure way to protect wealth. In California, we often encourage use of Private Retirement Trusts. As appropriate, we integrate Foreign Asset Protection Planning (FAPT) or other types of Domestic Asset Protection Planning (DAPT). We also help clients take full advantage of traditional ERISA protections for Defined Benefit plans. The following diagrams explain more:
We help clients access a state-of-the-art Exemption Diagnostic. This tool identifies where which clients on the client’s balance sheet can be moved to different types of trusts. We produce a detailed report to help make sure the client is claiming all creditor and tax exemptions available. Our sophisticated and effective process is used by lawyers and CPAs throughout California and other states where clients have high asset protection risks.
Over the last few decades, growing numbers of lawyers have exploited new theories of liability to create much more risk for business owners. Aggressive plaintiff lawyers will sue anyone perceived as having "deep pockets". Physicians, surgeons, lawyers, CPAs, engineers, and small business owners tend to be most at risk. Any individuals working with investors or regulators face large liability exposure. Owners of boats, planes or recreational vehicles can also have risk. Even seemingly low risk rental properties often have risks not covered by property casualty insurance. For all of these reasons, anyone with help should consider having an exemption analysis completed to spot problems and clarify potential solutions.
Very often the asset protection structures involve trusts. Most trusts generate taxable income. When the trusts are funded with high cash value "investment grade" insurance policies, the funds can grow tax-free and pay distributions tax-free (e.g., as zero-interest wash loans). For this reason, insurance planning often integrates with asset protection planning. Call or email us to learn more.