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The Parade of Horribles and the Parade of Possibles

The Parade of Horribles and the Parade of Possibles

The focus of estate planning is to protect your loved ones as well as your hard-earned assets. Estate attorneys do that by using strategies to guard the assets you have amassed from taxation, from seizure, and from other losses. To do that successfully, you must imagine the worst events that may happen, the ones that will likely happen, and consult with an attorney to ensure you plan appropriately.

What Asset Protection Opportunities Are Available to You?

Smart asset protection is a component of wise financial planning. Your estate attorney will help you utilize smart asset protection techniques to protect your assets from creditors, from taxation, and from opportunists. Since no one knows when a potential claim may arise, the best time to put those protections in place is today.

Asset Protection includes:

  • Protection from Creditors.
    • Anyone who might bring a lawsuit against you. Potential lawsuits could arise in the form of automobile accidents, a slip-and-fall injury on your property, or a malpractice action.
    • Parties to whom you may owe contractual obligations
    • A separated or divorced spouse
    • A live-in partner
    • Credit card companies
    • The IRS
    • Health care providers such as doctors and hospitals
    • Civil penalties or fines as the restitution for alleged wrongdoing
    • Regulatory penalties payable to a governmental entity


  • Insurance. is one way to shift your risk of loss. Types to have include:
    • Homeowners
    • Automobile
    • Life
    • Health
    • Umbrella aka Excess Liability to pick up where other coverage ends
    • Malpractice
    • Disability Income
    • Long-term care
    • Business liability
    • Directors and Officers (D&O) liability
    • Key Person


  • Protection of Your Property.
    • Who holds title to the following assets? You? You and a spouse? You and a partner? An LLC, LLP, FLP? A trust?
      • Personal residence
      • Rental properties
      • Vacation properties
      • Commercial properties
      • Recreation vehicles
      • Automobiles

  • Protections with Trusts. Numerous types of trusts exist to fit your asset protection needs.
    • Protective Trusts
    • Irrevocable Trusts
    • Spendthrift Trusts
    • Offshore or Foreign Trusts

  • Conversion of Assets into Creditor-Exempt Property
    • Homestead Property
    • IRA’s
    • Annuities
    • Pension Plans

  • Equity Stripping.
    • Equity stripping can take several forms. It is a simple and successful method of asset protection against creditors.
    • The process works by reducing equity in your property, thus discouraging creditors from pursuing claims against you, your spouse, your partner, your business, or entities you won.

If you would like assistance protecting your assets, please contact us at Sussan Greenwald & Wesler to speak with a knowledgeable and experienced attorney. You can reach us by phone at 609-409-3500.