Sunday, December 15, 2013

Asset Protection Trusts, Way Off Shore

The Sunday New York Times takes a lengthy look at asset protection trusts based in the Cook Islands. The Cooks launched their asset-protection initiative, with guidance from an American expert, in 1989.

Asset protection trusts aren't illegal and don't seek to dodge taxes. For doctors facing frivolous lawsuits, such trusts bring welcome peace of mind.

Other users of asset protection trusts may not be so upstanding. As the Times notes, assorted creeps and crooks, including Ponzi prince Allen Stanford, have utilized Cooks trusts.

Lady Joy
Judging from recently leaked data, trust assets are seldom held in the Cook Islands. More likely they consist of European financial accounts and other assets sprinkled around the world. The trust of Denise Rich, former wife of Marc Rich, included her yacht, the Lady Joy.

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