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Protecting Your Assets

Who should be concerned when it comes to protecting your assets? In particular wealthy individuals and families, corporate executives, private investors, and professionals.

If you fall into one or more of those categories then you should do something about protecting your assets. Be aware that in this litigious society you are practically a standing target for aggressive lawyers who will use any excuse in an attempt to drag you in to the courts. They are banking on the fact you would rather settle out of court and avoid a lengthy and costly court battle.

What you may not realize is that governments are another threat as they are systematically attacking your right to financial privacy even if you are not braking the law. The war against drugs and as of late against terrorism may seem to be justified considering the news reports but the results are that ordinary peoples' privacy that is being attacked. Now UK, Japan, Britain, Germany and now over 100 countries passing legislation against money laundering. Protecting your assets is not a luxury its a necessity, Decent hardworking middle to upper class people who own large and visible assets are displaying on the table highly tempting morsels and if laws change to allow seizure government is in for the gravy.

Proof in point is the "Asset Forfeiture" Program introduce in 1994 under the Asset Forfeiture Act which allows random seizure of property - without the need for any proof. This is strictly against the US Constitution and Human Rights. All that is required is an allegation that property was used for illegal activity. If you are not putting steps in place for protecting your assets your government may be your biggest concern.

Here is a quote from Amy Rudick director of the Office of Financial enforcement at teh Treasury Dept in 1991 where the intent of the program was described as follows:

"The more assets you can identify and seize, the more money you've got, either going into the general treasury or into asset forfeiture funds. That money can be used to help law enforcement in criminal prosecutions. I see this as a money making enterprise for the government, and anything that's going to make money is not going to die too quickly."

What steps can you take in protecting your assets? One thing you don't want to do is to lump all them all together. This is a common mistake made by many financial advisors and lawyers where they use one financial structure to protect both high risk and low risk investments. You may wish to set up seperate trusts putting the low risk assets together and creating seperat trusts for your high risk assets.

Offshore trust or an offshore life insurance policy are some strategies you should seriously consider. The benefits are that they shield you from currency controls, possible confiscation of assets by government political instability and other threats.

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