Asset Protection Facts
Fact Trusts and businesses are the number one tool used by Americans to protect their assets from creditors.
Asset Protection Trusts are trusts that are legal business structures used to insulate an individual's assets from every entity that is not permitted by Trust Deed benefits from the Trust. The only entry from outside the Trust Deed is by the jurisdictional authority for reporting and disclosure (such as the IRS).
An asset protection trust is usually established in an offshore jurisdiction, although the assets will probably remain in the U.S. under the direct control of the person who established the trust (the "settlor").
Fact Litigation costs each person an increasing amount every year. Tort costs amounted to $880 per person in 2005. This compares with $12 per person in 1950.
Fact Most lawsuits are settled out of court.
The fact that most lawsuits are settled out of court with attorneys who can negotiate shows the philosophy that anyone who is in control can negotiate a better settlement.
Fact - Median compensatory awards in occupational negligence cases range from $15,000 for funeral home negligence to $600,000 for abuse by clergy according to a 2002 Jury
Research analysis of jury awards for emotional injuries resulting from occupational negligence. The median award in legal malpractice cases is $167,000; the median award for psychiatrist/psychologist negligence is $200,000. Average awards in such cases range from $60,000 for funeral negligence to $1.3 million for cleric negligence. The average award for legal malpractice and psychiatrist/psychologist negligence is $643,000 and $639,000, respectively.
Fact - Litigiousness is not only pushing up the cost of insurance but also the amount of insurance that businesses must buy to protect themselves against lawsuits, potentially driving up the price of goods and services for all consumers; the greater the acceptance of litigation, the greater the risk to all.
Fact - Jury Verdict Research data shows that in 2005 the median, or midpoint, plaintiff award in personal injury cases was $45,000, about the same as the previous year but considerably higher than the $32,000 level in 2002.
The costs of settling a claims, includes defense, litigation and medical cost containment, expenditures for surveillance, attorney fees, litigation management and fees for appraisers, private investigators, hearing representatives and fraud investigators.
Fact Liability is a flow through responsibility analogous to a parent being responsible or having a duty to a child.
Use a separate entity for each liability-generating asset and never mix liability-generating assets. For instance, an apartment house should not be owned by the same entity that owns a printing business.
Fact In some entities or companies, partners can sue partners.
Avoid general partnerships and handshake agreements. This only causes trouble. Did you know that any general partner can commit the partnership (and hence every other general partner) to any legal contract (like taking out a loan). All general partners are jointly and severally liable.
Even if a person puts into effect a state of the art asset protection plan, he should still keep adequate insurance. Usually the main value of a good policy is that the insurance company must provide him a defense.
Fact Jurisdiction determines the authority of the law and in Asset Protection the jurisdiction that the creditor must assail.
No country in the world automatically recognizes U.S. based judgments because that fact is that most countries think that U.S. tort laws, securities laws and anti-trust laws are nonsensical. It is also true that no country in the world recognizes US tax judgments.
FACT Only successful people are attacked!
It is obvious that success attracts lawsuits. Keep a low profile. If people believe that a person is rich, chances are he will be sued. It should also be remembered that in order for someone to take away assets, they first have to be found.
Finally, it should also be remembered that a good asset protection plan does not rely on stealth alone. It should work even if every single document is discovered.
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