I think it really is true that most people don’t spend much time planning. Do you? I read that 60% of Americans don’t have any estate planning in place at all. And much of the current planning in place is outdated because laws have changed and probably like you, people’s lives have changed.
Planning can be about good things that address unique opportunities. Such as integrating your child into a business. And planning can be about scary things such as guarding your home and cash from a horrible lawsuit.
Some types of planning decisions allow you to prepare in advance and there are no surprises. For example, taking your time to decide who will care for you if you become sick. Or really thinking through the long-term strategy for exiting your business and enjoying your retirement years.
Other planning decisions don’t always give you the time you would like to prepare. For example, putting your asset protection in place when the “seas are calm.” The random nature of life is not going to give you an indication of when that curve ball is coming. Could be that nasty lawsuit you never imagined would head your way.
In a broad sense, estate planning will happen to most of us. Because most of us accumulate some assets, we will grow old and need help and we will pass our assets on to others. Asset protection, on the other hand, “might” happen to you. Will a tenant at your property sue you? Will your 16 year old kid with a new driver license crash the car and injure someone? Who really knows?
With estate planning, just about everyone needs to have some level of planning in place. If you don’t then the courts will step in and make decisions for you.
With asset protection, It comes down to how you feel about risk and probability and chance. It also comes down to your understanding of your own liability footprint. By this I mean, what is going on in your life that could potentially lead to liability?
Asset protection should also involve an understanding of the climate we are living in today. For that, you can click here for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce report on litigation across the country. Eye-opening stuff.
Estate planning and asset protection are two separate disciplines. But should be integrated, especially for business owners (investment property is a business too).
We are throwing the kitchen sink at you below. The video is short but jam packed with white hot issues that we deal with every day from people just like you.