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ABOUT THIS PROJECT
Unfortunately, protecting your assets is often a necessity in today’s world. We live in a litigious society where being sued is a real possibility for anyone with assets, not just the super wealthy. Protection is a method of insuring against loss due to a lawsuit, creditors, or long-term care. This type of legal planning is particularly effective for professionals and business owners. It enables them to control the risk to their personal assets as a result of their business and is an important tool in managing the risk of loss associated with long-term care.
LAW ALLOWS YOU TO PROTECT YOURSELF
With proper planning, your assets can be fully protected in the event of a lawsuit or judgment. Additionally, you can plan against the potential costs of long-term care.
The important thing to remember when creating an asset protection plan is that the entire planning process should be undertaken with the assumption that it may be scrutinized by future creditors. Guidance from a qualified attorney is the best course of action in this complex area to obtain the peace of mind you seek.
Some raise moral or ethical issues associated with long-term care planning in the context of asset protection. To address these issues, consider the story of the Free Bridge as told by US Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis:
I live in Alexandria, Virginia. Near the Supreme Court chambers is a toll bridge across the Potomac. When in a rush, I pay the dollar toll and get home early. However, I usually drive outside the downtown section of the city and cross the Potomac on a free bridge.
This bridge was placed outside the downtown Washington, DC area to serve a useful social service, getting drivers to drive the extra mile and help alleviate congestion during the rush hour.
If I went over the toll bridge and through the barrier without paying the toll, I would be committing tax evasion.
If, however, I drive the extra mile and drive outside the city of Washington to the free bridge, I am using a legitimate, logical and suitable method of tax avoidance, and am performing a useful social service by doing so.
For my tax evasion, I should be punished. For my tax avoidance, I should be commended.
The tragedy of life today is that so few people know that the free bridge even exists.
Asset Protection Planning is the Free Bridge.
Jeffrey R. Bellomo, Esquire is a Certified Elder Law Attorney by the National Elder Law Foundation under authorization of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. As the owner of Bellomo & Associates, LLC he advises families about the legal challenges facing them today. He counsels clients and provides solutions on: Asset Protection, Special Needs Trusts, Wills, Trust Design, Guardianships, Medicaid and Estate Planning & Administration. His mission is to provide professional caring service to all his clients.