Evaluation of creditor risk and the development of a strategy for acquiring creditor protected assets is an essential element of every good estate plan. In an effort to preserve funds for generating retirement income, promote funding for higher education and provide financial security for a loved one upon death, certain creditor protection benefits exist for retirement assets, 529 savings plans and life insurance policies, respectively. Depending on the type of “exempt” asset selected, navigation through complex federal and/or state law is necessary to determine the extent of creditor protection available. This article provides an overview of certain unique creditor protection devices and highlights their limitations outside of bankruptcy.
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