Basic asset protection planning consists of four main components to make sure you are well protected.
The first and most important component is a good liability insurance policy—and that normally means an umbrella policy to give you adequate coverage. You need to take care of this component first, which makes the other components work. Secure the policy before the fact and before it is too late.
The second component is to have strong legal planning. You need good documents which include trusts, wills, advanced powers of attorney, and healthcare documents. One main problem for legal planning is that people do not know their options. Good legal planning is all about choices; often it is about control versus absolute protection.
The third component is to have your property and assets titled properly. Do not just go with the flow—make sure everything is titled in a way to protect the assets and your family. Once you have your titles and beneficiary designations in order with an attorney, do not make changes without first talking to that attorney. A small change, even though the advice to make that change may come from a trusted person such as a banker or financial planner, might sound correct but can blow your legal plan and cost your family thousands of dollars unnecessarily.
This leads to the fourth component which is to have your financial planning consistent with your legal planning. This includes not only the type of investments you may have, but includes tax planning, what kinds of insurance to add, social security elections, and retirement elections. Your attorney should be communicating with your financial advisor and vice versa. The goal is to completely avoid losses or at a minimum to significantly reduce losses.
W.G. Alexander & Associates discusses the Veterans Pension in more depth, along with other assistance programs, during our free seminars every second Wednesday of the month at Independence Village of Raleigh at 2:00pm and 6:30pm. Register for our free seminars through our website at www.wgalaw.com, or call us at (919) 256-7000.
Attorney Bill Alexander of W.G. Alexander & Associates discusses these issues and more every Saturday morning on his radio program, “Asset Protection Today,” on TalkRadio 680 WPTF (AM), from 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM, and on Sunday morning on his television show, “Money Secrets with Bill and Mike,” on the CW (WLFL) at 8:00AM.