Asset protection lawyers assist in offering peace of mind by safeguarding your assets against third party claims. It is also a vital part of your estate planning strategy.
The reality is that your personal, professional and business life involves a great deal of risk. While you shouldn’t shy away from risk, it’s important your assets are protected if something doesn’t go to plan.
We can help you take steps to insulate your assets from a wide range of risks – from insolvency or relationship breakdown, to legal action. If unexpected circumstances arise, it’s important to ensure your personal assets are protected for yourself and your family. You don’t have to lose everything you’ve worked so hard for.
What asset protection lawyers can help protect you from?
With a bit of planning, it is possible to protect your assets from an unforeseen attack. We will safeguard your wealth and assets by implementing various asset protection strategies for a wide range of needs and circumstances. These strategies will limit creditor’s access to assets without engaging in illegal practices such as concealment, tax evasion and fraud.
For example, we can optimise protection of assets from:
- Financial difficulties or the insolvency of your business
- Creditors, bankruptcy or divorce
- Breakdowns between business partners, shareholders, joint venturers or unitholders
- The bankruptcy or divorce of your children when you pass your assets on to your children following your death
- Legal actions brought against your business by employees, clients, consumers, or members of the public
Who should be implementing an asset protection plan?
One of the biggest misconceptions about asset protection planning is that it is only required for wealthy individuals with lots of assets. In reality, asset protection plans should be considered if an individual owns:
- A business
- Intellectual Property
- Real Estate
In addition, those who are self-employed or employed or in a high risk industry should also consider reviewing and implementing asset protection strategies.
What strategies can be used for asset protection?
Our asset protection lawyers are experienced in using a wide range of legal processes, documents and strategies to optimise asset protection, including:
- Business structuring and restructuring involves matching your business needs with a structure that optimises asset protection. If your business outgrows your structure, you may need to restructure.
- Internal arrangements include agreements between shareholders, unitholders, joint venturers or partners. These agreements specify what will happen in particular circumstances, such as a party leaving the business or becoming incapacitated. They also outline the rights of the parties regarding contributions to business liabilities and the rights of each party if the business is wound up.
- Binding Financial Agreements outline the division of property and superannuation between the parties and spousal maintenance in the event of marriage or de facto relationship breakdown. These agreements must comply with the requirements outlined in the Family Law Act 1975 (Cth).
- Blended family wills are far more complicated than standard wills. Wills for blended families often need to provide for the surviving spouse in the second marriage, children of the first marriage, children of the second marriage, and stepchildren.
- Superannuation is usually a protected asset in bankruptcy. However, there are some exceptions. Superannuation can be split by agreement, or by the court, in the circumstance of a relationship breakdown.
How can we help you protect your assets?
We understand that asset protection involves understanding the risks you and your business face in safeguarding assets. That is why we help plan and review the systems in place set to deal with these risks.
We can advise on the best legal mechanisms to protect your assets and can draft and implement the necessary legal documents to put your asset protection strategy into effect.
For example, we can set up the appropriate business structures, draft the necessary documentation or agreements, lodge payment of any fees or duties and ensure these arrangements are legally binding and effective. We can also review your present arrangements or agreements and advise you of underlying risks or more effective alternatives.
Establishing an asset protection plan early is essential. Asset protection is most effective when strategies are implemented before signs of trouble begin to surface. Instead of waiting until the unthinkable happens, talk to our experienced lawyers who will be able to match asset protection strategies to your goals, needs and risk profile.
Want to talk to our experienced asset protection lawyers in Newcastle, Sydney or the Hunter? Call us on (02) 4929 7002, email us or complete an enquiry form.