Asset Protection

An Asset Protection Attorney Dedicated to Protecting You.

It is important to plan financially for both good times and bad times. Asset protection is a plan for the times in our life that we would prefer to forget, such as being sued by a creditor or individual. Certain assets are protected from creditors—your retirement savings or home, for example—but due to the laws in place that protect creditors and prohibit certain asset protection practices after a certain period of time, proper asset protection practices need to be carried out by an experienced asset protection attorney with an in-depth understanding of both tax law and civil law.

Exempt Assets

Certain assets are exempt from garnishment or forced sale by creditors. Exempt assets are defined differently in each state’s respective laws. One of the goals of asset protection is to transfer assets to the exempt category within the limits of the law. In Florida, some of the most common exempt assets are homes; cars; retirement plan, like IRAs or Roth IRAs; life insurance policies; and annuity contracts.

Nonexempt Assets

The importance of asset protection strategies is demonstrated by nonexempt assets. All property that does not fall under an exemption can be used by a creditor to satisfy a debt. This includes assets that are not in your possession or are located in another state.

Asset Protection Trusts

The laws of certain states provide some legal mechanisms to protect assets. One of these mechanisms is an asset protection trust (APT). Only certain states have statutes allowing asset protection trusts and each state defines the types of assets that can be placed in these trusts. However, asset protection trusts are an effective way to protect certain assets that might otherwise be nonexempt assets under Florida law.

 

When you are considering utilizing an asset protection trust, it is important that you work with an asset protection attorney that is knowledgeable about the different states that allow these trusts, the benefits and drawbacks of placing property into an APT, and what types of assets are eligible to be placed in a APT.  

 

Start Protecting Your Assets as Soon as Possible.

An effective asset protection strategy is implemented well in advance of a claim on assets being filed. If you even suspect that a claim could arise, it is important that you begin the asset protection process as soon as possible.

 

Each state has laws that prohibit the transfer of nonexempt assets to purposely avoid claims by creditors or diminish claims brought by creditors. In Florida Statute 726.105(1)(a), one type of transfer that could be considered fraudulent is a transfer made “With actual intent to hinder, delay, or defraud any creditor of the debtor”. Creditors have several options they can explore as remedies against fraudulent transfers including seeking judicial relief that would prohibit the transfer to occur and obtaining a lien or judgement against the asset to satisfy the debt.

 

However, a lot of asset protection techniques hinge on the actual knowledge that you could have a potential debt. So implementing a strategy as soon as possible is an effective approach to protecting your assets.  

 

Our attorneys have years of practice in the intricacies of asset protection techniques. If you suspect that you could be exposed to potential claims by creditors or lawsuits, call our office to receive a consultation that will protect you in the future.     

 

*Authoritative sources:

Florida Statute 726.105(1)(a)

remedies

Florida

 

Title Tag*:

Asset Protection Lawyer Miami | Miami Asset Protection Lawyer

 

Meta Description**:

Aggressive asset protection attorney in Miami, FL assisting clients with protecting assets from creditors, lawsuits, and judgements. Contact our office now to start protecting your assets.

 

Retirement Planning Attorney

Retirement Planning Attorney in Miami, Florida.

Retirement is something we all plan for our entire lives. However, most Americans have only a minimal amount of money saved for retirement, but saving money is only one part of the retirement planning process. Investing wisely can be just as difficult, but when invested properly, your life savings can ensure a happy financially healthy retirement.  

5 Steps to Planning Retirement.  

Determine Your Retirement Age

Although this may seem obvious, to some individuals determining their retirement age can be a difficult process. However, you need to determine, to a certain degree, when you are planning to retire, because your investment strategy will change as you move closer to retirement. Therefore, determining the amount of time you have to invest is the first step in the retirement planning process.

Assess Your Debts  

Homes, businesses, and cars tend to be the primary sources of most people’s debt, but all debts should be taken into account when planning your retirement. As a retiree, you may be living on a fixed income, and to create a thorough retirement plan you need to be able to project how much money you will require per year to live. Having large amounts of outstanding debts can impact your ability to live comfortably during your retirement or worse, force you to come out of retirement to cover your expenses.

Assess Your Income

Disposable income is where retirement savings is generated from, but for some clients, determining their monthly or bi-weekly disposable income can be difficult. To determine this figure, you need to calculate your monthly or bi-weekly net income and deduct from that figure essential expenses such as your mortgage, car payment, groceries, etc. The figure you are left with, after all essential expenses have been deducted, is your disposable income that you use as you see fit. Knowing this figure will allow you to create a comprehensive payment strategy.

Create an Investment Strategy

Once you have assessed your debts and determined your disposable income, you can create an investment strategy. This process begins with commiting to invest a certain amount of your disposable income each month or bi-weekly period. The strength of investing over time lies in taking advantage of compound interest and investing your money at different times in the market.

 

Some of the most common investments for individuals planning for retirement are an individual retirement account (IRA) or a Roth IRA. Both of these accounts provide certain tax incentives and you can structure both a Roth IRA and a traditional IRA with multiple types of investments.

Modify Your Investments Over Time

As you move closer to retirement, you will need to adjust your investments to minimize your risk exposure. This can involve selling high risk stock and investing low risk stock, putting a certain percentage of your retirement funds in bonds or CDs, or investing in low risk mutual funds, because you do not want to risk incurring a major loss near your retirement age.

 

Planning for retirement can be confusing and the risks associated with poor investment choices can have long-term consequences. Our team wealth management attorneys can guide you through the retirement planning process by developing strategies to ensure that your retirement plan is implemented to meet your goals and ensure your future success.

 

*Authoritative sources:

minimal amount

Disposable income

Roth IRA

individual retirement account

 

Title Tag*:

Retirement Planning Attorney in Miami | Miami Retirement Lawyer

 

Meta Description**:

Retirement planning attorney in South Florida specializing in the evaluation, structuring, and management of new and existing retirement plans.

 

Wealth Management Attorney

Wealth Management Attorney in Miami, FL

You have worked hard your entire life. Now what?

Most people have worked hard their entire life for the possessions they have, but only a small percentage of the population rise to a high level financial security. For those who have, managing your wealth ensures that you and your family are financially stable, your children have money for college, your husband or wife is taken care of if something were to happen to you, and your future retirement will become a reality.

 

As a law firm with attorneys that were previously state prosecutors, our wealth management attorneys know that wealth is not acquired quickly. It is earned through hard work, which is why we pride ourselves on not just providing investment advice but personally assisting our clients with creating a comprehensive wealth management plan that will sustain your current level of wealth and acquire additional assets through calculated investment campaigns.

Assess the Present

When planning investment strategies, it is important that you have a clear understanding of your current financial situation. This includes an evaluation of all of your current assets and their respective performance. As wealth management attorneys, our approach is to personally assist you with a current assessment of your assets, because we know that this is an important step in accomplishing your long-term financial goals.   

Stocks

Some of the most volatile or risky investments include stocks of all kinds. During your assessment, you need to consider the past performance of the stocks you currently own, the position of the industries those stocks are located in, and the current political and regulatory climate of each industry. Moreover, categorize your stocks according to the level of risk associated with each stock.

Prefered Stock

Preferred stock carries numerous advantages over common stock and could easily be considered to have a minimal amount of risk due to the following factors:

 

  • Prefered stockholders are usually paid a fixed dividend.
  • Prefered stockholders are paid dividends before common stockholders.
  • Some preferred stock allows the holder to collect dividends in arrears, if a company is struggling and suspends dividend payments.
  • Some preferred stock allows stockholders to have preferential treatment with respect to investment recoupment, if the company is liquidated.

 

These factors make preferred stock an appealing safe investment with a minimal amount of risk, but preferred stock is only sold to a select amount of investors. Therefore, it is fairly uncommon investment.

Common Stock

Common stock is one the most widespread types investments, but it carries with it certain pros and cons. Common stock can yield high returns through both dividends and appreciation. However, common stocks sold by some companies and within some industries can be extremely volatile due to the current climate of the stock market. This volatility is also affected by the political landscape in the U.S. and around the world.  

Bonds

Bonds come in many forms. Generally speaking, one of the most secure bonds are U.S. Treasury bonds. The reason being, treasury bonds are issued by the U.S. government, and it is generally assumed that the federal government will never be unable to pay its debts. Although all investments carry a certain degree of risk, treasury bonds are the closest thing to a riskless investment. Other bonds include corporate, municipal, and agency bonds.

 

Bonds can be an appealing investment, because their returns are fixed. From an assessment perspective, a bond’s rating is an important piece of information to have. An experienced wealth management attorney will use this rating to determine the assumed value in the present and in the future of any bonds you own, because ratings are issued on the basis of risk. Lower ratings are given to companies that have an increased risk of a defaulting on a debt. Therefore, careful consideration must be given to each bond type and its rating.

Real Estate

When purchased and used correctly, real estate can be a good short-term and long-term investment that can yield high short-term returns or consistent residual returns. However, as with most investments, good management is a key factor in successful real estate transactions. When assessing the value of your real estate, you need to consider your overall goals for each piece of property. Are you planning on purchasing and re-selling the property for a quick profit? Maybe you want to rent the property to a tenant for long-term residual income. In either situation, an accurate evaluation of your required return on investment and the perceived level of risk will help you determine the value of real estate investments currently in your portfolio and the evaluation of future investment opportunities.

 

Gold

Gold is one the oldest investments known to man. Gold will always hold a certain amount of value regardless of whether or not a company has gone out of business, a government collapses, or new government regulations are put in place, which is part of gold’s appeal as an investment. Although gold prices like other physical commodities can fluctuate, gold’s value consistency is one of the reasons why so many investors have a certain amount of money invested in gold.

Evaluating the Strength of Your Portfolio

A portfolio’s strength can be viewed through many different lenses such as returns, risks, and, one of the most important ways to evaluate a portfolio, diversity. The overall goal of wealth management for most people relies on a common premise, minimizing risks and maximizing returns. One of the most common ways to accomplish this goal is through diversification. Diversifying your portfolio can minimize the amount of overall risk expose you are exposed to.

Diversification

 

Diversifying a portfolio is accomplished by investing in multiple companies, industries, types of securities, and types of investments. For example, if you invested $4 in each of two companies, company A and B, suppose company A has a great quarter, and its stock price rises from $4 to $6. Company B has a bad quarter, and its stock price drops from $4 to $3. You as an investor have yielded an overall profit of %12.5 or $1.

 

I could have invested all of my $8 investment in company B, which would have left me with a 25% or 2$ loss, or I could have invested all of my money in company, which would have yielded a $4 profit. However, it is just as likely that the scenario could be reversed by company A having a bad quarter and company B having a good quarter. By investing in both companies the losses of one company are offset by the gains of another. Although you did not yield the highest return possible, you minimize your risk of incurring a overall loss. This simple example demonstrates the two fundamental goals of diversifying your investments, minimizing your risk and yielding consistent returns.

Mutual Funds

Mutual funds are a type of investment that demonstrate the benefits of diversifications. A mutual fund is comprised of a pool of investors that purchase hundreds of stocks or bonds in multiple types of industries. When you purchase shares of a mutual fund your are not purchasing stock but rather, a share of the fund itself. Shares of mutual funds generate returns through appreciation and capital gains disbursements, but due to the fund’s diverse portfolio, mutual fund shares tend to be less volatile than stocks and maintain a high level of liquidity.   

 

Plan for Future Success

Our team of wealth management attorneys will assist you with structuring your portfolio maximize the diversity of your investments. This includes evaluating your current investments, the performance of those investments, and their potential for future returns. Active management is the key to your future financial success, and in order to maximize your returns, our attorneys recommend a mixture of investments involving varying levels of risk, some of which you may not be aware of.  

Customizing Your Investment Strategy

Each time a client steps into our office to discuss investment strategies, we take the investor’s goals into account. Everyone is at a different stage in their life cycle, and due to this, each investment strategy is unique. If you are planning on retiring soon, you will most likely not want to consider investments that could be deemed high risk with the possibility of high returns and losses. A younger client might be willing to consider investing in high risk securities. However, both of these clients, regardless of age, require a wealth management strategy that is tailored to their needs and that takes their short-term and long-term goals into account.

Understanding How Your Investments are Taxed

As you invest successfully, it’s important that you obtain a wealth management attorney that understands the complexities of the tax system and how certain assets are taxed. In 2016, the IRS audited almost 1.1 million tax returns, and as a wealth management law firm that specializes in taxes, we have witnessed the financial consequences that a poor tax strategy can incur on an individual’s financial stability. So it is important that you consult with a with a professional that is knowledgeable about how each investment is taxed when considering new and existing investments. Our team of wealth management attorneys give our clients an additional sense of security, because they know that they are working not just with excellent investment professionals but also, tax experts.

 

*Authoritative sources:

small percentage

risky investments

Common stock

Bonds

Rating

value consistency

Diversification

1.1 million tax returns

 

Title Tag*:

Wealth Management Lawyer in Miami | Miami Asset Planning Lawyer

 

Meta Description**:

Wealth management law firm with attorneys specializing in portfolio evaluation, trading and selling securities, real asset management, and investment planning. Schedule a consultation today.  

 

    

 

1 2 3 4 5 11