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Regardless of your income level and assets, asset protection and estate planning are a vital part of your financial plan. Planning ahead can give you greater control, privacy, security of your legacy, and keep your assets out of probate.  For individuals that do not plan ahead, other parties will have to decide on the distribution of your assets (without your input) and courts will have to get involved.  The added expense of such process will also be borne by your estate and diminish the distribution to your beneficiaries.  

We focus on protecting assets and facilitating smooth transitions, regardless of the complexity of your situation.  While it is essential to recognize that such planning does not consist of a “one-size-fits-all approach”, that does not mean that planning tailored to your specific needs requires overly complex (or expensive) strategies.   

To the contrary – our fees are affordable and offered on a flat-fee basis.

What is estate planning and why do I need to protect my assets?

Estate planning allows a person to direct what happens to their property upon their death.  

Estate planning often includes a: 

(1) last will and testament; 

(2) financial power of attorney; 

(3) health care advanced directive; and 

(4) a revocable/living trust. 

Sometimes estate planning involves further advanced trust needs and/or tax planning.  Asset protection planning generally consists of the legal strategies and techniques used to shield your assets from creditors, litigants, and other potential claimants so your assets will remain available to you and your family in the long term.  

Individually, our family dynamics are unique and have evolving needs.  Some us are single parents, some have blended families; some of us have long-term planning needs for dependents with special needs or disabilities.  Others have extended family members with varying needs for support that we may need to secure.  In each of these scenarios, guardianship, asset distribution, living wills and powers of attorney if you become incapacitated are substantial considerations we need to evaluate and address in your planning.

Further, for many of us who own businesses, we have a major issue – and it’s not necessarily who would inherit the business.  It is who would step in immediately to take over the business and protect a substantial asset.  If you were gone quickly, who would replace you and restore order in your business while a transition or sale would occur?  

By implementing tailored strategies and legal tools to address these concerns, you can protect your assets from threats and financial risks and know that when your time comes, your family and/or business partners are not left scrambling to handle your affairs.  Here is a closer look at how planning can help:

  • Ensuring intended inheritance goals are met: Planning can prevent your assets from being easily squandered by heirs by outlining your intended goals through your will and trusts. By creating a trust, you can control distributions to beneficiaries based on specific ages, purposes, or milestones.

  • Protection from financial missteps: Proper planning can help insulate your assets from the impact of poor financial decisions or mismanagement by you or others involved in your financial affairs.

  • Protection from creditors and lawsuits: Well-designed protection strategies can prevent your assets from being seized by creditors or in legal judgments, ensuring your assets remain secure.

  • Safeguarding personal assets from business liabilities: If you own a business, asset protection planning can help mitigate/eliminate exposure of your personal assets from business-related debts, lawsuits, or bankruptcies.

  • Healthcare-related expenses: Planning can help shield your assets from being drained by unexpected medical bills or long-term care expenses, preserving your assets and allowing you to qualify for Medicaid or other assistance programs if needed.

  • Business Succession Planning:  For those of us with businesses, planning can prevent a disruption in operations and maintain stability for a transition of management or eventual sale.  If you died suddenly, who would step in and take over the day you are not there?  Would there be chaos, a power struggle, competitors trying to gain an advantage?  Could the business lose value before your grieving spouse could begin to deal with the fallout? 

Our Approach

While everyone likely knows they should have a will and an estate plan — if you not have one (yet) – you are certainly not alone.  Let us help guide you in this process and get your affairs taken care of in a practical manner.   We work hand-in-hand with our clients and their financial professionals (accountants / financial planners / investment advisors) to provide a tailored approach to your individual needs.  With each client we will:

  • Review Your Situation.  Our planning begins with a comprehensive consultation, which we offer by phone, Zoom, or in-office to review your specific situation and goals.

  • Planning Meetings.  We meet with you to explain our recommendations to implement your personal goals and address questions that you may have.

  • Implementation.  We work with you to fully implement your individualized plan.  While some solutions may be done yourself, we work with you and your financial professionals to ensure that implementation of the plan is complete.  Documentation of your plan can be signed remotely or in our offices.  

  • Continued Availability.  Planning should be revisited regularly, particularly after major life events like the birth of additional children, financial status changes, or relationships.  As your planning may evolve or time, our firm remains available to assist you.  

We encourage you to immediately set up a free consultation with one of our seasoned attorneys.

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