Who doesn’t love Mick and the boys? I am talking about the Rolling Stones who are on tour right now. I saw them live years ago and maybe you did too? It is always a fantastic show.
What is interesting about this years tour is that the major (and only) sponsor of the show is a retirement focused nonprofit. Guess it makes sense considering the ages of the band members themselves. Yes, Jagger was born in 1943 which makes him 75 years old and on stage dancing around with hot lights in his face touring the world!
The Stones tour and the retirement sponsor got me thinking about my own firm’s focus on protecting retirement assets. Asset protection planning is not only a big deal while you are building your wealth, it is also a very important consideration after you have accumulated assets and are getting ready for retirement.
You worked so hard all your life to build up your nest egg. You put in major sweat equity into your business. Maybe you sacrificed family time and personal relationships to advance your career. You scraped and clawed to get ahead.
Now it’s time to enjoy the fruits of your labor and the last thing on your mind is dealing with one of life’s curve balls that could tear it all down. However, you know that life is not static and it is random. Preparing for retirement should involve an understanding of where things could go wrong and then put the proper planning in place to protect yourself. Here are a few important issues to be aware of:
2. Unforeseen liabilities to elderly parents. This is a very real issue, especially regarding car accidents. It is always so hard to know when to have that discussion with Mom or Dad about their driving skills. There is no right way to do it. We get scenarios here at the firm where an elderly parent has injured someone and they are being sued and their retirement assets are at risk. Proper asset protection planning is very important in these cases.
3. Children who own assets with parents. We see this all the time. Sometimes it is a joint bank account or could be rental income property. The problem is that the assets are not held in a protective entity. If Mom or Dad has a liability and someone (or some company) is after them, then you are now at risk because of the way you own an asset with them. The opposite is true also. If you are sued, then your parent(s) are exposed to your liability. For example, legal entities like a stocks/bonds/cash Limited Liability Company can be an effective tool to protect co-owners of an asset.
4. Outdated or non existent estate planning. This is a biggie and very common. Assets are very much at risk if proper estate planning is not in place. For example, what if Dad is remarried and his new wife has kids from a previous marriage? Dad passes away and now the new wife claims she and her own kids get it all. You and your siblings are aced out. Bad situation. Or your Dad gets sick, has no estate plan and new wife is mismanaging your Dad and his assets. This often leads to a legal battle, legal bills and destruction of Dad’s assets. Dad could have had his exact wishes spelled out in the estate plan.
I don’t want to keep drilling down on this, but you get the picture. Retirement planning is NOT just about saving and spending wisely. It is also very much about asset protection planning. If you are approaching retirement or dealing with elderly parents, then take the time to understand how to get organized and updated in this area.
We have some great resources for you. Check out our Medical or Medicaid planning assessment. We also walk families through an asset protection assessment on how to properly own assets between parents and kids and how to integrate the jointly held assets into both the parents and the kids living trusts.
To learn more about our complimentary planning assessment, click below. You can also sign up with the link and the first step is a brief intake call before connecting with the appropriate expert at our firm.