Don’t be someone else’s winning lottery ticket. If you’re a medical professional or a business owner, you need some form of asset protection – because what you don’t know can hurt you. If you deal with customers, clients or “the public” in any way, you need some strategies to protect yourself in a litigious and costly world. You are also an ideal candidate for tax planning, since you will almost certainly face tax issues (perhaps annually) that the average American never has to think about.

Consider a corporate structure. When you put a corporate entity in place (and have the corporation own the tangible assets of your business and lease them back to you), you take a big step toward insulating your personal assets against lawsuits directed at your practice, partnership or business. Incorporation isn’t a perfect solution to every potential legal or financial issue, but a corporate structure is often useful.

Plan to build wealth clear of “predators and creditors”. Certain investment vehicles (such as annuities, qualified retirement plans, and varieties of “cash rich” life insurance) offer you some protection against those who would seize your accumulated assets.

Import the knowledge you need to solve tax issues. Plan to reduce income and estate taxes through IRS-approved methods and proper titling of investment accounts and other assets, and hire a CPA and attorney who really understand state tax laws as well as federal tax laws. If you’re a young physician or young business owner, how will you possibly have time to become a tax expert? You must delegate.

Insure yourself wisely. For example, while no doctor would practice without up-to-date malpractice insurance, it is also wise to arrange personal umbrella liability coverage. Attorneys don’t want to go to trial any more than you do, and an attorney can opt to chase the umbrella for a lump sum settlement instead of targeting your personal and business assets through a messy trial.

Don’t let “predators and creditors” cash in on your success. No one has time to do all this by themselves, but it must be done – if it isn’t, and you are a business owner or medical professional, you are on your way to becoming a target in our litigious and tax-laden society.

As in medicine, it’s always wise to see the specialists: the financial advisor, CPA and attorney who can help you plan some asset protection. Talk to a qualified financial advisor today who can lead your team or build a team of these specialists for you. In this world, it’s not “what if”, it’s and “when” and the question is, how will you protect yourself “when” that day comes? Find out how today; don’t risk financial ruin tomorrow.

The foregoing content reflects the opinions of White Oaks Wealth Advisors and is subject to change at any time without notice. Content provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be used or construed as investment advice or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of any security. There is no guarantee that the statements, opinions or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. All information or ideas provided should be discussed in detail with an advisor, accountant or legal counsel prior to implementation.

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