There are several states, notably California, that have become increasingly aggressive in pursuing traditional IRA assets in liability cases. Accordingly, investors should seek to keep as much as possible in segregated ERISA-sponsored retirement investments, as they still provide unlimited protection for the assets in the plan, even against aggressive states.
No question, ERISA trumps IRA for asset protection during life. But what happens to those funds after you pass them to your kids? Make an appointment right now to design your estate plan, possibly with a standalone retirement trust (SRT).
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David R. Duringer, JD, LL.M, is a concealed firearm instructor and tax lawyer specializing in business and estate planning. He is managing shareholder at Protective Law Corporation, serving Southern California from its Laguna Hills (Orange County) headquarters and a satellite office in Coronado (San Diego County).
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