This past week my husband talked to a new client for our firm, a Doctor, whose 15 year old son was in a car accident. It was his fault. They didn’t have their assets protected for 2009 and beyond. Do you need to hear the rest? They lost almost everything. He still has his practice, though, and since the IRS doesn’t recognize the lawsuit as a legitimate expense, he still owes a lot of taxes. So, the next attack is coming from the IRS and may cost him his practice too. Can you imagine starting over at 50 with a family and a huge debt?
Asset protection is different now though. I’ve never seen states with more varying laws. More than any time ever before make sure you’re getting good and current information for protecting your assets.
For example, one structure I used to recommend for real estate investments – a Limited Partnership – is practically a guaranteed audit lightning rod now. The IRS is searching out LPs that hold real estate and then going through to audit the limited partners. If you’re currently in this same situation, please take a look at the IRS Survival Guide for Real Estate Professionals. IRS audits are on the rise against real estate investors.
I’ve been in business for 25 years and I’ve never seen so many people being sued, or threatened to be sued in my life. Partners suing partners, employees suing employers, if it looks like you have something, anything, there is going to be someone who wants to take it away from you. Protect yourself with the right business structures for 2009 and beyond.