Sandy Salt Lake Co. UT lifetime asset protection trust

Asset Protection Lawyer - Asset Protection Planning - Why Go Offshore

protect your money

Go Back

Asset protection systems refer to the various strategies available for protecting your valuables from lawsuits and creditor-collection attempts. This sort of protection is usually adopted by most businesses and individuals. Some simple steps can help protect most of your assets without incurring much expense or trouble.

In fairly safe areas in which crime is not a major problem, a basic system designed for asset protection may be enough. Everyone will certainly want to protect his home, since a house is considered to be one's biggest and most expensive asset. There are three ways one can do this, which include physical protection, corporate protection, and insurance protection.

A physical protection system refers to what you can change in the property structure to protect it. The first point to remember is that you never buy a home in areas of high crime or natural disasters such as earthquakes or landslides. Then, consider installing security systems, burglar alarms, and fences. Home security systems are designed to help prevent theft or damage of your valuables while you are away from home.

Corporate protection is offered through limited liability companies, corporations, and trusts. Having your property in this entity provides legal security and possible tax breaks. The benefits of this protection vary according to your location, so it is important to look into the type of corporate protection while you are thinking about purchasing properties.

A third protection system, which is simple to do, is the utilization of the inherent asset protection of an insurance policy. Many insurance companies and banks provide you good rates for insurance on an investment property. An insurer is always ready to pay a specified amount of money to or for you if a specific incident occurs. The incident might be your falling sick, someone damaging your assets, or a natural disaster.

Go Foward

All Articles

Home

Salt Lake City Salt Lake Co. UT legal will

Asset Protection Lawyer - Selecting the Jurisdiction of a LLC For Maximum Asset Protection

Asset Protection Lawyer

Go Back

There are certain key elements you want to protect during a divorce. Asset Protection in a divorce usually consists of actions involving a spouse. Spouses who want to protect there finances and avoiding splicing property up. Personal property and marital property are the assets they are looking to protect. Even if the said property is in a single name. It may still be subject to division under the laws of the state or court system.

Inheritance and distinct property can possibly be separate from marital property. But individual property can and does sometimes get mixed up with marital property. If you have personal property such as money that was put into any marital accounts after you were married. These funds are now marital property.

This instance is where it would have been handy to have had a prenuptial agreement. This in turn would have helped to keep your assets safe. But if there is no such agreement your most likely going to loose at least have of those funds.

In this case protecting your individual assets would have saved you a lot of trouble. This would be called an Individual Asset Protection. This would have been included in the a fore mentioned prenuptial. Simply put, To keep your asset's safe you would have just not included these funds in the marital accounts. In this light a prenuptial is not necessary to protect yourself with asset protection.

If before marriage, All to keep Asset Protection in a divorce. Just keep your accounts separate and you will have used Asset Protection in divorce. As you can see Asset Protection can be very simple or very complicated. Especially if involving a court of law. You never know what a judge of the courts may do or order during a divorce.

You may have certain other rights in your state of jurisdiction. Remember that some states don't allow the protection of asset's in any circumstance. Know your state and local laws in this area. Also certain country's don't allow asset protections in any form.

Have your asset's planned before you get married to avoid any hatred or despise for the other party. It is that simple to make asset protection in a divorce work for both party's involved.

Go Foward

All Articles

Home

Riverton Salt Lake Co. UT american society for asset protection

Asset Protection Attorney explains Asset Protection Systems

protect your property

Go Back

Asset protection is one of the primary purposes for creating a limited liability company ("LLC"). LLCs provide two types of asset protection: (1) protecting the members from the liabilities of the company (sometimes called protection from "inside liabilities") and (2) protecting the assets of the LLC from the liabilities of the members (sometimes called protection from "outside liabilities").

If an LLC owns a rental house and the tenant sues the LLC because they slipped and fell down the stairs, this is an example of an inside liability. The general rule is that the tenant can sue the LLC, but they cannot go after the assets of the members unless they can pierce the corporate veil of the LLC. Piercing the corporate veil is very difficult to do. The test for a piercing of the corporate veil may vary slightly from state to state, but generally the tenant must prove that the LLC is the alter-ego of the member, and that the member has not treated the LLC as a separate and distinct legal entity. Because the laws protecting the members from an inside liability are similar in every state, the asset protection against inside liabilities is similar regardless of where the LLC is filed.

If a member is a physician and is sued for malpractice, the creditor may attempt to go after the assets of the LLC in order to collect on the judgment. This is an example of an outside liability because a creditor of a member is seeking to get into the LLC through the member. The remedies available to a creditor of a member vary greatly from state to state. In some states, the creditor of a member has a right to foreclose on the members interest and become the owner of it. In other states, the creditor of a member is limited to a charging order. A charging order is a court order which requires the LLC to pay any distributions that otherwise would have been paid to the member directly to the creditor. A charging order is not a good remedy for a creditor because the creditor is only entitled to distributions if the LLC decides to make a distribution; a creditor cannot force a distribution to be made. Therefore, an LLC offers greater asset protection if it is governed by the laws of a jurisdiction that strictly limits the remedies of a creditor.

Most if not all states follow the "internal affairs doctrine" established by the United States Supreme Court. This doctrine says that the internal affairs of a company are governed by the laws of the state where the company is filed, not the laws where the business activities take place or where the members are located. In fact, most states have a statutory provision stating that the internal affairs of an LLC are governed by the laws of the jurisdiction where the LLC was filed. This means that if an LLC is filed in Alaska and a California resident sues another California resident who is a member of the Alaska LLC for a tort committed in California, the issue as to whether the creditor can get information or assets from the LLC is governed by the laws of Alaska and not the laws of California. In other words, the state where an LLC is filed is critical in determining the asset protection provided by the LLC from outside liabilities.

Another issue affecting the asset protection provided by an LLC is confidentiality. In some states, the members and managers of an LLC are required to be disclosed and included in the state records which are available to the public. In other states, the members and managers are not made a part of the public record. Many people feel that they have better asset protection if the identity of the members and managers are not made public.

Having studied the laws of every state in this regard, and having read many scholarly articles on the subject, it is my opinion that Alaska provides the strongest asset protection against outside liabilities because they not only limit the remedies of a creditor of a member to a charging order, but they also prohibit a creditor from obtaining a court order for inquiries, accountings or directions (see Alaska Statutes 10.50.380). Several other states expressly limit the remedies of a creditor to a charging order, which should also be sufficient to prevent a creditor of a member from collecting from an LLC.

When it comes to confidentiality, I believe that the New Mexico LLC is the best option because there is no public disclosure of members and managers and no requirement for the filing of an annual report.

Nevis is a country in the Caribbean that has the best LLC laws in the world. Nevis LLCs offer the strongest asset protection and confidentiality of any jurisdiction. Nevis LLCs can be created and maintained without excessive cost or complexity. Any business or assets can be owned by a Nevis LLC, wherever it is located. If you want the strongest asset protection available, I recommend a Nevis LLC.

If you want the best LLC within the United States, I feel that Alaska is the best option for asset protection purposes and New Mexico is the best for confidentiality of managers and members. Alaska has a convenient online filing system, but New Mexico has lower filing fees and zero annual renewal fees. In conclusion, it is important to note that the laws described in this article are apt to change from time to time. This article is provided for informational purposes and should not be used as legal advice for any specific situation. Readers are advised to seek competent legal counsel in designing and creating limited liability companies or engaging in asset protection planning.

Go Foward

All Articles

Home

Midvale Salt Lake Co. UT asset security and protection

Asset Protection Attorney: What Are The Advantages Of An Asset Protection Trust or DAPT?

law office help

Go Back

There are certain key elements you want to protect during a divorce. Asset Protection in a divorce usually consists of actions involving a spouse. Spouses who want to protect there finances and avoiding splicing property up. Personal property and marital property are the assets they are looking to protect. Even if the said property is in a single name. It may still be subject to division under the laws of the state or court system.

Inheritance and distinct property can possibly be separate from marital property. But individual property can and does sometimes get mixed up with marital property. If you have personal property such as money that was put into any marital accounts after you were married. These funds are now marital property.

This instance is where it would have been handy to have had a prenuptial agreement. This in turn would have helped to keep your assets safe. But if there is no such agreement your most likely going to loose at least have of those funds.

In this case protecting your individual assets would have saved you a lot of trouble. This would be called an Individual Asset Protection. This would have been included in the a fore mentioned prenuptial. Simply put, To keep your asset's safe you would have just not included these funds in the marital accounts. In this light a prenuptial is not necessary to protect yourself with asset protection.

If before marriage, All to keep Asset Protection in a divorce. Just keep your accounts separate and you will have used Asset Protection in divorce. As you can see Asset Protection can be very simple or very complicated. Especially if involving a court of law. You never know what a judge of the courts may do or order during a divorce.

You may have certain other rights in your state of jurisdiction. Remember that some states don't allow the protection of asset's in any circumstance. Know your state and local laws in this area. Also certain country's don't allow asset protections in any form.

Have your asset's planned before you get married to avoid any hatred or despise for the other party. It is that simple to make asset protection in a divorce work for both party's involved.

Go Foward

All Articles

Home

Magna Salt Lake Co. UT special needs trust

Asset Protection Lawyer - Asset Protection - Protecting Yourself in a Divorce

protect from divorce

Go Back

Asset protection is one of the primary purposes for creating a limited liability company ("LLC"). LLCs provide two types of asset protection: (1) protecting the members from the liabilities of the company (sometimes called protection from "inside liabilities") and (2) protecting the assets of the LLC from the liabilities of the members (sometimes called protection from "outside liabilities").

If an LLC owns a rental house and the tenant sues the LLC because they slipped and fell down the stairs, this is an example of an inside liability. The general rule is that the tenant can sue the LLC, but they cannot go after the assets of the members unless they can pierce the corporate veil of the LLC. Piercing the corporate veil is very difficult to do. The test for a piercing of the corporate veil may vary slightly from state to state, but generally the tenant must prove that the LLC is the alter-ego of the member, and that the member has not treated the LLC as a separate and distinct legal entity. Because the laws protecting the members from an inside liability are similar in every state, the asset protection against inside liabilities is similar regardless of where the LLC is filed.

If a member is a physician and is sued for malpractice, the creditor may attempt to go after the assets of the LLC in order to collect on the judgment. This is an example of an outside liability because a creditor of a member is seeking to get into the LLC through the member. The remedies available to a creditor of a member vary greatly from state to state. In some states, the creditor of a member has a right to foreclose on the members interest and become the owner of it. In other states, the creditor of a member is limited to a charging order. A charging order is a court order which requires the LLC to pay any distributions that otherwise would have been paid to the member directly to the creditor. A charging order is not a good remedy for a creditor because the creditor is only entitled to distributions if the LLC decides to make a distribution; a creditor cannot force a distribution to be made. Therefore, an LLC offers greater asset protection if it is governed by the laws of a jurisdiction that strictly limits the remedies of a creditor.

Most if not all states follow the "internal affairs doctrine" established by the United States Supreme Court. This doctrine says that the internal affairs of a company are governed by the laws of the state where the company is filed, not the laws where the business activities take place or where the members are located. In fact, most states have a statutory provision stating that the internal affairs of an LLC are governed by the laws of the jurisdiction where the LLC was filed. This means that if an LLC is filed in Alaska and a California resident sues another California resident who is a member of the Alaska LLC for a tort committed in California, the issue as to whether the creditor can get information or assets from the LLC is governed by the laws of Alaska and not the laws of California. In other words, the state where an LLC is filed is critical in determining the asset protection provided by the LLC from outside liabilities.

Another issue affecting the asset protection provided by an LLC is confidentiality. In some states, the members and managers of an LLC are required to be disclosed and included in the state records which are available to the public. In other states, the members and managers are not made a part of the public record. Many people feel that they have better asset protection if the identity of the members and managers are not made public.

Having studied the laws of every state in this regard, and having read many scholarly articles on the subject, it is my opinion that Alaska provides the strongest asset protection against outside liabilities because they not only limit the remedies of a creditor of a member to a charging order, but they also prohibit a creditor from obtaining a court order for inquiries, accountings or directions (see Alaska Statutes 10.50.380). Several other states expressly limit the remedies of a creditor to a charging order, which should also be sufficient to prevent a creditor of a member from collecting from an LLC.

When it comes to confidentiality, I believe that the New Mexico LLC is the best option because there is no public disclosure of members and managers and no requirement for the filing of an annual report.

Nevis is a country in the Caribbean that has the best LLC laws in the world. Nevis LLCs offer the strongest asset protection and confidentiality of any jurisdiction. Nevis LLCs can be created and maintained without excessive cost or complexity. Any business or assets can be owned by a Nevis LLC, wherever it is located. If you want the strongest asset protection available, I recommend a Nevis LLC.

If you want the best LLC within the United States, I feel that Alaska is the best option for asset protection purposes and New Mexico is the best for confidentiality of managers and members. Alaska has a convenient online filing system, but New Mexico has lower filing fees and zero annual renewal fees. In conclusion, it is important to note that the laws described in this article are apt to change from time to time. This article is provided for informational purposes and should not be used as legal advice for any specific situation. Readers are advised to seek competent legal counsel in designing and creating limited liability companies or engaging in asset protection planning.

Go Foward

All Articles

Home

Draper Salt Lake Co. UT estate planning basics

Asset Protection Attorney explains Asset Protection Systems

protect your property

Go Back

These potential scenarios should concern any entrepreneur or investor: You get sued personally and lose; the judgment creditor (the entity that won the suit and was awarded a judgment against you) decides to go after your business and investment assets. Or you have a retail store plus several real estate investments; you get sued for something related to the store and the judgment creditor decides to attach your real estate. You can cry, "Unfair!" all day long and it won't matter if you haven't taken the appropriate asset protection steps.

An asset protection tool you need to understand is the charging order. By definition, a charging order is an order issued by a court to a judgment creditor which essentially compels an entity of which the debtor is a partner or member to direct to the creditor until the judgment is satisfied any distributions that would otherwise have been made to the debtor (from Asset Protection: Concepts & Strategies for Protecting Your Wealth by Jay Adkisson and Christopher M. Riser, McGraw-Hill, 2004).

What this means is that if you have an interest in a Charging Order Protected Entity (COPE) [entities for which creditors are limited to using charging orders as remedies in collecting debt, such as a Limited Partnership (LP), a Limited Liability Company (LLC), and certain others] and a creditor obtains a charging order, the entity is ordered to pay the creditor any money that would have gone to you until the judgment is paid in full. In most states, the creditor has no rights with respect to the ownership or management of the entity and cannot force the entity to make a distribution. The idea is to balance the rights of creditors with those of the non-debtor partners.

Charging orders do not come into play with assets such as stock in a corporation or personal property. But in an entity such as an LLC, legislators have taken steps to prevent creditors from attaching partnership or membership interests and essentially becoming partners or members themselves because such a change in ownership could disrupt the operations of the entity. Where you are not protected by state law, discuss this issue with your attorney because you may be able to create a comparable level of protection through your operating agreement.

How you are protected

As long as the creditor has the charging order, the LLC can simply not make any distributions and the creditor should not receive any money. For example, let's say a visitor to your home slipped on the sidewalk, sued you, and won. As a judgment creditor, he decides to go after all of your assets and gets a charging order against the LLC that owns your real estate investments. He typically can't collect anything until the LLC makes a distribution, and you and the other members of the LLC are perfectly within your rights to decide to not make any distributions for as long as you like. Because of this, creditors with charging orders are often willing to negotiate a settlement to get at least a portion of their money and be done with the situation.

Another issue that often prompts judgment creditors to settle charging orders quickly is the potential for tax liability. If the creditor is entitled to the distribution when it is made, he may also be obligated to pay the taxes. It's possible for the members of the LLC to issue a K-1, which is the tax form used to report a member's share of an LLC's income, potentially making the creditor liable for taxes on profits even though he hasn't received any money.

As of January 2007, there were no known cases where the IRS has held a judgment creditor holding a charging order liable for taxes--but nor are there any cases where the IRS has specifically relieved a judgment creditor of such liability. Until case law becomes definitive on the issue, creditors may be reluctant to take a chance that they could be held liable for taxes on profits they haven't received and may never receive.

The protection offered by charging orders may be circumvented in a number of ways, depending on the state in which the entity operates and your individual circumstances.

Be aware that simply forming a partnership or LLC is not going to automatically protect your assets. Charging order protected entities are some of the strongest and most acceptable asset protection tools available, but to be effective, they must be properly structured and carefully drafted according to your particular requirements and the laws of your state.

Go Foward

All Articles

Home

Bellevue Draper Utah family limited partnership

Asset Protection Lawyer - Selecting the Jurisdiction of a LLC For Maximum Asset Protection

legal help

Go Back

Asset Protection Guide:

The strange and sometimes puzzling evolutions in the business world ask for more and more secure methods of protecting the client's assets. In spite of all popular articles claiming the right to be taken into consideration, asset protection strategies depend on individual perceptions. Each person involved in a business is supposed to choose his own means to protect his assets. His decision is crucial but it can be changed by several factors. First element which enters the system of asset protection strategies is considered to be the counselor. He can be a lawyer or not. His position is not really important. Most important fact about a counselor is to understand his client's business and to be able to offer the appropriate advice. He is the most significant element which decides upon asset protection strategies. A counselor must be well informed about all law changes so he can direct his client in the right way. If the relation between two of them respects the basic principles of communication then results are fortunate. Each counselor has to know everything about his client's business as long as he is supposed to guide him towards financial success. However each person owning a business has the right to decide on his future movements. Even if a counselor does try to influence him the final move depends on the client's dynamic character.

A business man might be misguided by his private counselor. Applying asset protection strategies means playing with the law system. This is not about violating basic principles. Most of all is about discovering original ways which might give someone the chance to take advantage in certain situations. For example the principle of LLC might prove extremely operative. But if there are not any experienced persons behind the business master then he would probably miss this hint. The asset protection strategies system is quite sinuous and requires a capable person who is able to explain the basic rules.

People involved in a business might take this fact as a childish game and enjoy playing till the end. First of all, people are supposed to think about asset protection strategies. If taken into consideration right from the beginning then things are really simple. So the business man will enjoy his position being already protected against all possible dangers. If his counselor prescribes him the appropriate asset protection strategies then he does not have to worry about future success. From now on procedures are not so complicated. They remain exhausting but they are pleasant in a way. They are pleasant because they prove their efficiency. They are no longer insecure means of gaining money. Taking real advantage of the asset protection strategies means finding all the possible ways towards financial success. No one should miss this valuable tip of the presence of the counselor. Once a business is getting stronger and stronger, its owner must thing about all opportunities to protect his money. Of course that a counselor would always come with additional information but the final decisions belongs to the client. He is the only person who can decide upon asset protection strategies. He can say if certain strategies are compatible with his expectations. A counselor might always suggest something but if his client does not want to respect the plan then the deal is violated. There are no formal procedures to punish such a decision. The business man might be right. He knows his business. Maybe the counselor is wrong. There are numerous possible situations. But a good counselor would always be able to offer a good advice. So asset protection strategies might be best suggested only by a counselor.

Go Foward

All Articles

Home

Galena Grove Draper Utah asset protection attorneys denver

Asset Protection Lawyer - Asset Protection - Protecting Yourself in a Divorce

Asset Protection Law Office

Go Back

Asset Protection Guide:

The strange and sometimes puzzling evolutions in the business world ask for more and more secure methods of protecting the client's assets. In spite of all popular articles claiming the right to be taken into consideration, asset protection strategies depend on individual perceptions. Each person involved in a business is supposed to choose his own means to protect his assets. His decision is crucial but it can be changed by several factors. First element which enters the system of asset protection strategies is considered to be the counselor. He can be a lawyer or not. His position is not really important. Most important fact about a counselor is to understand his client's business and to be able to offer the appropriate advice. He is the most significant element which decides upon asset protection strategies. A counselor must be well informed about all law changes so he can direct his client in the right way. If the relation between two of them respects the basic principles of communication then results are fortunate. Each counselor has to know everything about his client's business as long as he is supposed to guide him towards financial success. However each person owning a business has the right to decide on his future movements. Even if a counselor does try to influence him the final move depends on the client's dynamic character.

A business man might be misguided by his private counselor. Applying asset protection strategies means playing with the law system. This is not about violating basic principles. Most of all is about discovering original ways which might give someone the chance to take advantage in certain situations. For example the principle of LLC might prove extremely operative. But if there are not any experienced persons behind the business master then he would probably miss this hint. The asset protection strategies system is quite sinuous and requires a capable person who is able to explain the basic rules.

People involved in a business might take this fact as a childish game and enjoy playing till the end. First of all, people are supposed to think about asset protection strategies. If taken into consideration right from the beginning then things are really simple. So the business man will enjoy his position being already protected against all possible dangers. If his counselor prescribes him the appropriate asset protection strategies then he does not have to worry about future success. From now on procedures are not so complicated. They remain exhausting but they are pleasant in a way. They are pleasant because they prove their efficiency. They are no longer insecure means of gaining money. Taking real advantage of the asset protection strategies means finding all the possible ways towards financial success. No one should miss this valuable tip of the presence of the counselor. Once a business is getting stronger and stronger, its owner must thing about all opportunities to protect his money. Of course that a counselor would always come with additional information but the final decisions belongs to the client. He is the only person who can decide upon asset protection strategies. He can say if certain strategies are compatible with his expectations. A counselor might always suggest something but if his client does not want to respect the plan then the deal is violated. There are no formal procedures to punish such a decision. The business man might be right. He knows his business. Maybe the counselor is wrong. There are numerous possible situations. But a good counselor would always be able to offer a good advice. So asset protection strategies might be best suggested only by a counselor.

Go Foward

All Articles

Home

Redmond Place Draper Utah medicaid asset protection

Asset Protection Lawyer - A Guide to Asset Protection

protect your gold

Go Back

"Asset protection" has long been a strategy in divorce cases across the United States. The term "asset protection" refers to the use of a legal strategy in order to hide or shield assets from the Courts. Bitcoins, the relatively new internet currency, will most likely become the next frontier of asset protection.

In divorce cases, asset protection can take many forms. Sophisticated asset protection techniques involve transferring money to an overseas account, the formation of legal entities (trusts, corporations, limited liability companies) and other methods.

The most unsophisticated and simple form of asset protection, and perhaps the most common in divorce cases, is simply holding money in the form of cash (i.e., inside a home safe or in a bank safety deposit box). In this way, a person that is in the process of divorce believes that he can "protect" the cash from the divorce process. The divorcing spouse might keep the existence of the cash secret from his spouse, divorce lawyer and Court, in order to avoid being ordered to share the cash with his spouse. This strategy may or may not be successful, but it is surely not legal because it requires that the person misrepresent his assets to his spouse and to the Court.

A sophisticated divorce lawyer will know how to uncover hidden assets of this kind through the examination of financial records and other means of legal discovery. Bitcoin, however, has the potential to replace the hiding of cash as the most common form of asset protection in divorce cases. Given the structure of the bitcoin system and most divorce lawyers ignorance regarding bitcoins, it could become a significantly more successful method than hiding cash.

Bitcoin is the digital currency that was created in 2009 by the anonymous developer known the by pseudonym as Satoshi Nakamoto. It is a currency that exists only in digital form. All bitcoins and transactions are "registered" on the bitcoin block chain that is updated by bitcoin users rather than a centralized authority. The transactions, however, do not include names but rather the digital identification of each bitcoin. Bitcoin owners keep their bitcoins in a bitcoin wallet. The wallet is not necessarily a physical wallet, but rather various methods for storing the digital identification of the bitcoin. The wallet might be kept on a computer, the server of a bitcoin wallet website, or even a piece of paper.

While is theoretically possible to trace the transfer of a bitcoin by examining the block chain, one will only discover the public identification key of the bitcoin rather than the name of the owner. If the wallet is kept on a person's computer or on a website (where a party to a divorce registered his name) it is possible to discovery the existence of the bitcoins. However, wallets do not have to be associated with a name. Furthermore, if a person uses a "brainwallet" tracing a bitcoin to a specific person becomes almost impossible through any conventional method. A brainwallet is the use of a memorized passphrase in order to store a bitcoin.

The methods for discovering hidden cash will be the first approach of any divorce lawyer for discovering a bitcoin asset protection plan. Unfortunately many, if not most, divorce lawyers and judges are unfamiliar with bitcoins and the fact that bitcoins can be used to hide assets. A divorce lawyer who doesn't understand bitcoins cannot possibly be expected to uncover hidden bitcoin assets. If you have any suspicion that your spouse might be hiding assets, make sure your lawyer understands the bitcoin system and how to discover hidden bitcoin assets.

Go Foward

All Articles

Home

Draperville Farms Draper UT family limited partnership

Asset Protection Lawyer - Asset Protection Planning - Why Go Offshore

protect your gold

Go Back

Asset protection is one of the primary purposes for creating a limited liability company ("LLC"). LLCs provide two types of asset protection: (1) protecting the members from the liabilities of the company (sometimes called protection from "inside liabilities") and (2) protecting the assets of the LLC from the liabilities of the members (sometimes called protection from "outside liabilities").

If an LLC owns a rental house and the tenant sues the LLC because they slipped and fell down the stairs, this is an example of an inside liability. The general rule is that the tenant can sue the LLC, but they cannot go after the assets of the members unless they can pierce the corporate veil of the LLC. Piercing the corporate veil is very difficult to do. The test for a piercing of the corporate veil may vary slightly from state to state, but generally the tenant must prove that the LLC is the alter-ego of the member, and that the member has not treated the LLC as a separate and distinct legal entity. Because the laws protecting the members from an inside liability are similar in every state, the asset protection against inside liabilities is similar regardless of where the LLC is filed.

If a member is a physician and is sued for malpractice, the creditor may attempt to go after the assets of the LLC in order to collect on the judgment. This is an example of an outside liability because a creditor of a member is seeking to get into the LLC through the member. The remedies available to a creditor of a member vary greatly from state to state. In some states, the creditor of a member has a right to foreclose on the members interest and become the owner of it. In other states, the creditor of a member is limited to a charging order. A charging order is a court order which requires the LLC to pay any distributions that otherwise would have been paid to the member directly to the creditor. A charging order is not a good remedy for a creditor because the creditor is only entitled to distributions if the LLC decides to make a distribution; a creditor cannot force a distribution to be made. Therefore, an LLC offers greater asset protection if it is governed by the laws of a jurisdiction that strictly limits the remedies of a creditor.

Most if not all states follow the "internal affairs doctrine" established by the United States Supreme Court. This doctrine says that the internal affairs of a company are governed by the laws of the state where the company is filed, not the laws where the business activities take place or where the members are located. In fact, most states have a statutory provision stating that the internal affairs of an LLC are governed by the laws of the jurisdiction where the LLC was filed. This means that if an LLC is filed in Alaska and a California resident sues another California resident who is a member of the Alaska LLC for a tort committed in California, the issue as to whether the creditor can get information or assets from the LLC is governed by the laws of Alaska and not the laws of California. In other words, the state where an LLC is filed is critical in determining the asset protection provided by the LLC from outside liabilities.

Another issue affecting the asset protection provided by an LLC is confidentiality. In some states, the members and managers of an LLC are required to be disclosed and included in the state records which are available to the public. In other states, the members and managers are not made a part of the public record. Many people feel that they have better asset protection if the identity of the members and managers are not made public.

Having studied the laws of every state in this regard, and having read many scholarly articles on the subject, it is my opinion that Alaska provides the strongest asset protection against outside liabilities because they not only limit the remedies of a creditor of a member to a charging order, but they also prohibit a creditor from obtaining a court order for inquiries, accountings or directions (see Alaska Statutes 10.50.380). Several other states expressly limit the remedies of a creditor to a charging order, which should also be sufficient to prevent a creditor of a member from collecting from an LLC.

When it comes to confidentiality, I believe that the New Mexico LLC is the best option because there is no public disclosure of members and managers and no requirement for the filing of an annual report.

Nevis is a country in the Caribbean that has the best LLC laws in the world. Nevis LLCs offer the strongest asset protection and confidentiality of any jurisdiction. Nevis LLCs can be created and maintained without excessive cost or complexity. Any business or assets can be owned by a Nevis LLC, wherever it is located. If you want the strongest asset protection available, I recommend a Nevis LLC.

If you want the best LLC within the United States, I feel that Alaska is the best option for asset protection purposes and New Mexico is the best for confidentiality of managers and members. Alaska has a convenient online filing system, but New Mexico has lower filing fees and zero annual renewal fees. In conclusion, it is important to note that the laws described in this article are apt to change from time to time. This article is provided for informational purposes and should not be used as legal advice for any specific situation. Readers are advised to seek competent legal counsel in designing and creating limited liability companies or engaging in asset protection planning.

Go Foward

All Articles

Home