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  • Writer's pictureShane Ellis

The Round-To-It Approach To Estate Planning Is Safest - Part 2

Part 2 - Do you want fries with that?!

Consulting with an experienced lawyer is crucial to you ensuring that your Estate Planning and Wealth Protection strategies are properly implemented to begin with, and are then kept up to date, to support your specific facts and circumstances. By doing so you can legally minimize unnecessary taxes and ensure that current laws are complied with. The legal world is after all forever changing as Governments alter statute laws, and courts hand down new decisions. Your structures and strategies need to meet those changes head on otherwise it can be very costly as we will see in today’s factual story in a moment.

To be blunt, failing to consider your estate holistically isn’t like the server at Maccas simply forgetting to say to you “do you want fries with that,” or more on point the lawyer forgetting to simply say to you “do want to protect your wealth when considering your estate planning structuring”...It misses a whole section of what should be being discussed with you when planning out your estate; and missing wealth protection can be very costly for you and to your family when the unexpected arises. Let’s face it, “fate” is a four-letter word.

It’s like a mechanic tuning up your car’s engine so that it runs well, but regardless of noticing that your two front tires are very bald and lacking in tread which makes them dangerous, nothing is said to you by the repairer.

Here, at the Shane Ellis Legal Group, we call the correct process of analysis, advising on, and structuring of your estate - Family Estate Protection Planning (FEPP) which takes a holistic approach to estate planning. The FULL round to-it approach is discussed with our clients!

Typically, the vanilla style of estate planning includes just creating a distribution style of Will for a person, and possibly an Enduring Power of Attorney as well.

BUT WHAT HAPPENS if you have your Will in place to protect your family when you die, and maybe an Enduring Power Of Attorney in place to protect you if you lose your faculties...BUT THEN YOU HAVE NO WEALTH PROTECTION?...So all is going along well until, in this very litigious society where everything is someone else’s fault, you get sued for mostly baseless reasons because there is a no-win no-fee lawyer backing the other person’s claim against you who will receive a share of the spoils on settlement!

Estate planning, and Wealth Protection strategies are widely treated as two distinct concepts, which, in the writer’s humble opinion, is thwart with danger, just like picking up a Grizzly bear cub near its mother. And, let’s face it, if you lose your wealth, or a big chunk of it now, it may be very hard to replace. Your efforts in life will have been taken away from you being able to enjoy them, or for you to leave as a legacy to those you love he most.

By adding the “legal fries – in protecting your wealth” to your estate planning you are completing the job to protect you, and your family now – whilst you are alive and well.

You are protecting against the unexpected; which is often called in the financial world – “hedging your bets” and it is exactly the process followed by banks, other financial institutions, and wise people to protect their wealth.

It works on the simple principle that “secured creditors at law rate before unsecured creditors”. That is why the bank, as a secured creditor of yours, gets paid first if you default on your loan with them. They have mortgage security over your house, and/or a PPSA Charge over your cars and non-real estate assets, and they have first bite of the cherry to sell those assets to get repaid.

In contrast, unsecured creditors get the crumbs left over if there are any!

The Asset Protection strategies we implement for our clients work on the same principle that the big banks apply, so that our clients are structured so their equity in their assets are secured. The clients maintain control and access to their assets, like their home and their cars whilst remaining protected against the unexpected....and the really cool part is there is NO STAMP DUTY & NO TAX TO IMPLEMENT THE STRATEGY.

Let me explain further by sharing with you today’s factual tale about Bob.

He was sensible enough ensure that his estate planning including his asset protection was in order before he went on his trip to North America. He wanted to protect his family, in case the unexpected happened whilst he was bush walking, like the possibility of him getting killed by an angry female Grizzly Bear. After all, how was he to know that the cute little furry guy he had been playing with had a very protective mother who happened to be 3X his weight in size, and whose jaws could crack a coconut in a split second.

Luckily for his wife and kids, his estate planning including his asset protection sufficiently protect the family assets which are secured in favor of an asset trust for the family. Even though the family was potentially without his ability to earn an income from him becoming bear chop suey, the family wealth was protected from financial wolves beating at the door.

Beyond that, he also had properly drawn Testamentary Trust Wills in place ("that protected his family against unnecessary taxes, and also protected their assets which - we will look at in detail in Episode 3 – NOT ALL MAKES & MODELS ARE THE SAME”).

Now please don’t be traumatized by this tale. It is but a tale as it plainly says above. It is factual because a Grizzly is 3X the guy in the pics weight & they are highly protective of their babies. He isn’t very athletic (the jumper says “Farmy” not “Army”) and that bear cub weighs more than he can usually comfortably lift that high for very long. The cub’s name is Bob. The bloke is Fred (who is a farmer). The pic was photo shopped at the Zoo, where Bob the bear cub was on the outside of the plexi-glass and Bearzilla his Mum is behind the plexi-glass. She is OK with bear cub photos because they pay for the massive amount of bear treats she gets when Bob joins her back in the enclosure after phot time each day.

...and also very factual as Fred the Farmy does have proper estate planning including his asset protection in place because farming can be a very dangerous pastime, and who knows what unexpected event really could take Fred actually coming across an angry grizzly in the USA wilderness.

Now that your fears have been allayed about Bob’s wellbeing (he is actually 10X that size now and is a fully grown male bear) and truthfully it was – “The last known photo of Bob” taken that day. Fred was the last customer served for a bear cub pic! Click below for a free 'Round-To-It' checklist to ensure that your estate and wealth protection affairs are up to date!

Round-To-It Estate Planning Checklist
Download PDF • 62KB

...and stay tuned for EPISODE 3 – NOT ALL MAKES & MODELS ARE THE SAME!


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