What is "Asset Protection"?

Asset protection is the pratice of using a series of strategies, and tactics, of designed to protect a persons asssets from litigation, divorce and other claims.  It is, when done properly, a legitimate form of preserving wealth from depletion by creditors and other claimants.  In its most common form it the srategies use retirement accounts (such as IRAs, and 401(k)s), life insurance policies, and other forms of property ownership to shield assets from potential claimants.

Asset protection planning techniques often employ revocable and irrevocable trusts. However, great care needs to be taken to preserve the legitimacy of the strategies.  For example, the transfer of assets into these protective structures, must be done before a claim is made, or before you have reason to know a claim.  Transers made  in an attempt to avoid creditors once a claim exists, are called fraudulen conveyances or transfers.  And, fraudulent transfers bring grave and negative asset protection consequences. Assets can be recaptured and the protection planning can fail.

For that reason, asset planning should be done well in advance of claims.

This blog will examine such issues andwill give you a practical guide to avoiding the legal traps of asset protection planning. In particular it will examine:
  • Tension between asset protection planning and fraudulent transfers
  • How legitimate forms of asset protection planning can go wrong and how to avoid such problems
  • The many types of creditors and their specific and often very different rights
  • Special estate planning, divorce, tax, and criminal law considerations

Please leave us a comment of question.

You can also reach David M. Frees III at 610-933-8069 or [email protected]
David M. Frees, III
Attorney, Speaker and Author