ESTATE PLANNING, BUSINESS AND INVESTMENT STRUCTURING
Dwyer Lawyers can help you plan for the growth and protection of your hard-earned wealth, for both your benefit and your family’s. This is not an easy task. Laws and taxes are complex and seem ever-changing.
We view business and investment structuring and estate planning as inter-related.
How efficiently you and your spouse or partner manage your income and assets now determines your standard of living both now and in your retirement and will affect the estate you or your partner and your family will have available for support. The business and investment decisions you take now will determine how your estate serves you while you are alive and how it will look after your family.
It’s about saving money and protecting it
Many people think estate planning is someone else’s concern. After all, you won’t be there, right?
Your spouse could die before you. How are you going to manage? And what if you both die in a plane crash? Who will look after and pay for raising your children? These things happen and if somebody does not get it right there can be a lot more grief and a lot less net income for the surviving family than there could have been.
And suppose your parents are elderly and want to leave you and the family money. Do you really want that nest egg to end up adding to your tax bill or being exposed to claims from creditors or from your children’s ex boyfriends or girlfriends? (In the Roman Empire, legacy hunting was a fashionable activity: the modern equivalent is bringing a worthless claim for family provision or claiming against a superannuation death benefit, hoping that the victims will pay up something rather than incur legal costs and litigation risks.)
Estate planning is not just about your will alone
Your super and your home may never be dealt with by your will or your spouse’s. That can be good or bad. What if you have business debts and have given personal guarantees? Do you want the family home to pass automatically to you and be open to be seized by your creditors? What if your spouse’s super comes to you and you don’t need it but you want help with your children’s education costs?
At Dwyer Lawyers, we think about these things and help our clients plan ahead. We know that a well-drafted estate plan can save our clients and their families worry and money. We offer our clients and their families thoughtful personal attention, listening to their individual concerns about the estate planning process and guiding them towards the best outcomes to suit their needs.
Sometimes a simple will may be all that is needed. But, before just asking for a simple will, it pays to think about what you really need and what will deliver the best value for the surviving family – which may include you, as a surviving adult with a lot of extra costs and responsibility, having lost the support and income of your partner.
We advise on the best way for our clients and their families to achieve security and peace of mind for the future, including –
- Trusts – including Testamentary Trusts
- Life insurance trusts
- Enduring powers of attorney
- Estate tax planning
- Family business succession
PROTECTING CLIENT WEALTH
It’s about having the right investment or business structures
All too often people do not think ahead enough when they start a business or make investments. Then they discover that when they want to change things (for example, because of a business bust-up or divorce) they are massively exposed and face large capital gains tax or stamp duty costs in re-arranging assets.
Dwyer Lawyers have considerable skills when it comes to advising on the establishment and maintenance of effective business and personal investment structures, whether in Australia or overseas. As specialists, we are happy to work with our clients’ regular legal or accounting advisers to develop tailor-made business and investment structures which deliver optimal outcomes.
Effective business and investment structuring has to maximize control and wealth protection for owners and directors while minimizing risk. Planning for business sale or succession, providing against risks from death, divorce, disability or insolvency is part of the structuring process, as is ensuring that any structure is tax effective and no unnecessary tax burdens are incurred.
In addition to advising on new structures, Dwyer Lawyers can regularly review and maintain existing structures as personal circumstances, laws and regulations change.
Dwyer Lawyers advise on the tax implications of planned or completed transactions. We encourage people to talk to us well before they make decisions which could have adverse tax consequences. Among other things, we advise on –
- Income tax
- Capital gains tax
- Small business taxation
- Stamp duty
- International tax, including inwards and outwards investment or migration