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Asset Protection Key Concepts
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Eight Key Concepts of Asset Protection

Concept #1

Judgment creditors can only take from you what you own. If you do not own something, they cannot take it! It seems simple, but so is the law of gravity. As simple as it is, it has profound impact on how most asset protection techniques work.

Concept #2

No country in the world automatically recognizes U.S. judgments, period! Think about that; no country in the world automatically recognizes U.S. judgments! To register and enforce a U.S. judgment abroad, usually a case must be litigated a second time in the foreign country. Note that in other countries, lawyers do not work on a contingency fee basis and the cost of litigating a second time will be astronomical, especially since the plaintiff has already paid for litigation.

Since no country in the world automatically enforces U.S. judgments because they have no power of decision outside their designated legal jurisdiction.

Concept #3

Nobody can take your assets away without first winning a lawsuit and obtaining a judgment. A judgment from a lawsuit does not normally expose your assets to pre-judgment attachments. There is a second court proceeding for this. The judgment is the award for damages after the damages have been proven.

Normally, in the U.S. , you have time to plan how to respond to an attack and the planning options expand if you put an asset protection plan in place when the financial seas are calm and before any attack occurs.

Concept #4

Asset protection strategies are best implemented when the financial seas are calm. Once attacks are mounted, it may be too late to do any serious protecting.

Concept #5

A creditor has to find the judgment and determine that it is worthwhile and cost effective to garnish or take it. If it is difficult to discover and then even more difficult to attach to, as in “possession”, a creditor may settle out of court and in general become more reasonable.

The other import aspect is visibility; stealth works. Flashy cars, houses, cash accounts are easily discovered and this starts the pursuit during the judgment process. However, a good asset protection plan relies on technology and the use of the laws that are in place to grant protection that is bestowed to citizens.

Concept #6

When it comes to your money, never trust anybody, especially a foreign trust company. All asset protection plans should be structured so that you are never vulnerable to any person.

Concept #7

Divide and conquer. Never mix liability-generating assets in the same entity. For example, you would never have two apartment houses owned by the same limited partnership, or you would never mix an apartment house with your securities account. Always divide and conquer.

Concept #8

Finally, the U.S. is the only country in the world that permits and encourages contingency litigation. In all other countries, it is unethical for an attorney to take a case on a contingency basis. There are very few exceptions to this. In addition, most countries will force somebody attacking your assets abroad to post cash with the court to handle the fees and costs and if the defendant is successful, it then given to the defendant.