The Sequoia Group

Asset Protection: No Brainers

Don't make your wealth obvious.

A lifestyle that advertises you have a lot of disposable income makes you an attractive target for lawsuits. If you're driving a top-of-the-line luxury automobile and taking very expensive vacations, others will automatically assume that you are a very wealthy individual and see you as a ripe target for a lawsuit.

Draw up a comprehensive pre-nuptial agreement before marrying.

While it may not be the advice people in love want to hear, it's some of the best legal advice you’ll ever get. Simply stated, divorce happens.

Resolve all existing personal or business liabilities.

It is always better to be proactive than reactive. The use of well-drafted and reasoned asset protection planning in advance will save you much grief down the road. It is a hard fact that most businesses fail in the first three years, and these often turn from great expectations to courtroom battles as the partners fight for remaining assets. Also, remember that binding arbitration or mediation is always better than protracted litigation.

Understand your local, state and federal employment laws.

Few areas are as problematic as those involving employees. Unhappy ex-employees can easily exaggerate or fabricate incidents that "prove" they were victims of sexual harassment or other forms of discrimination. Learn how to legally interview, hire, and fire employees, and train your subordinate executives accordingly.

Don’t play favorites with employees.

It’s simple—treat everyone equally. Think long and hard before giving any employee a special break or extra time off for any reason. In addition, it is very important to discipline employees equally. If you cannot apply the same standards to everyone, then dispense with the standards altogether, or just close up shop, before an ex-employee does it for you.

Be extremely careful about taking any action that might be construed as sex discrimination.

According to Jury Verdict Research:

  • 38 percent of all verdicts between 1996 and 2002 involved claims of sex discrimination.
  • 67 percent of sex discrimination court cases end with the plaintiff winning.

Understand the concept of vicarious liability.

The law says that an employer can be vicariously liable for the actions of employees, in some cases even for action the employer specifically told the employee not to take. If that isn’t enough to scare you, remember that in many states, parents also may be liable for the actions of their minor children.

If you have questions about offshore and domestic asset protection strategies, call The Sequoia Group, call our office at 561-998-6885 or toll-free at 866-988-6009 to arrange a consultation.

Asset protection legal services for clients in Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, Boca Raton, Palm Beach, Jupiter, Naples, Fort Myers, Sarasota and cities throughout Florida.