Asset preservation planning is legal planning used to protect your home, investments and other assets from being taken or used during your lifetime to pay for things that won’t benefit you or your family. It has traditionally been used by wealthy people to protect their assets against risks such as business failures, lawsuits and taxes. More recently, it has found another use that is of tremendous importance to typical middle-class older Americans: protecting your property and life savings from the potentially devastating cost of long-term care. With life expectancies increasing, the chances of needing long-term care later in life growing, the cost of long-term care increasing dramatically, and establishing eligibility for government assistance being made ever more difficult because of stricter laws, now is decidedly the time to put an asset protection plan in place.
Under current law, the first $5,340,000 of your estate is exempt from federal estate tax. At that exemption amount, estate taxes are only a concern for the wealthiest ½% of American families. If you’re part of the other 99½%, the risk of losing all or most of your life savings to pay for long-term care is now by far the single biggest threat to yourability to leave a financial legacy to your spouse, children or other loved ones. Establishing an asset protection plan can eliminate that risk. It is the wisest and most important thing you can do to guarantee that you won’t die flat broke or with a much smaller estate than you hoped and planned to leave for your loved ones.