Protect your life’s work.
Many of our clients have assets that they would like to protect from creditors. Our experience with debtor/creditor issues bolsters our ability to help protect against creditors of families and their businesses. Depending on your circumstances, they may also be ways to decrease tax liability, and to avoid probate.
Ohio law on these issues is always changing and evolving. In 2012, Ohio enacted the Ohio Asset Management Modernization Act, which created protection for individuals from creditor claims and allows individuals to create a trust known as a domestic asset protection trust. While in a traditional trust, the party creating the trust (grantor), names other individuals as beneficiaries, in a domestic asset protection trust, the grantor can name themselves as a beneficiary. While the domestic asset protection trust cannot prevent current creditors from collecting on their claims, the trust can protect against future creditors. In order for this type of trust to protect you, it must be properly drafted. Our attorneys can help you understand and design a trust that works for your specific needs.
Protecting your assets involves a number of other considerations. Your assets and businesses need to be properly insured with adequate coverage. Ensure that there are no exemptions to coverage that may be problematic in the event of a loss. If you own a business, it is also critical to ensure that the business was formed as the correct entity to protect yourself and your personal assets from liability. Businesses may be structured as corporations, limited liability corporations, partnerships, or sole proprietorships, and depending on which model is used, the ability to of creditors to get the business’ assets varies. You should periodically have counsel review your business and personal assets to ensure that there are no additional avenues that can be utilized to protect them.