Asset Protection describes all legal options to protect your private assets against unauthorized access by third parties. Protect yourself from life risks that can have a negative impact on your liquidity, such as annoying payment obligations resulting from legal disputes (manager liability, enforceable liability, insolvency, divorce, inheritance, etc.)

The Cook Islands Trust is a legal and frequently used tool to achieve effective asset protection. Due to the high courtesy and the resulting sums for damages, asset reconciliation and other liquidity-endangering judgments more and more citizens protect their own assets against the self-service mentality of winning creditors or their own state with a trust abroad.

That’s why one thing is especially in demand today: a battle-tested solution that protects your assets effectively and legally. It is hardly surprising at this point that the creation and continued existence of asset protection trusts such as the Cook Islands Trust are becoming increasingly important in Europe and especially in Germany. No other form of asset protection protects you better than a properly designed offshore trust. Learn more about how trusts work and how they can ensure your wealth in the text below.

Asset protection through an offshore trust

In general, such a trust structure is of course particularly frustrating for public authorities, courts, and creditors, because their assets have become inviolable under the protection of foreign legislation. Assets that you have officially transferred to your trust are no longer part of your private wealth. The Trust is an autonomous body that can acquire, generate and sell its own assets. This is a significant difference compared to private companies that are always owned by at least one shareholder. Once ownership of assets has been transferred, the assets are in the exclusive power of the trust. It is precisely this circumstance that makes it impossible for creditors to compromise your assets and, ultimately, can not cause you to surrender assets that are not your property.

The Trustee manages the assets on a trust basis and is required to use those exclusive to the Trust Deed or the last Letter of Wishes for the benefit of the Beneficiaries. Any creditors are not among this select group of people. The trustee is not subject to the constraints of German legislation, as he is in the state of residence of the trust and is bound by the legal framework applicable there. He is able to deny any foreign court judgment and its implications, which seeks to undermine the statutes of your trust. As a settler, you are protected because your trust has been irrevocably established. You can judge by any means and yet you need not to worry that your trust or your participation rights in its assets could be endangered. Beneficiaries are also secured, their rights to the trust are inviolable. As a protector, you are protected by the “anti-duress clause”. Only your voluntary declarations of intent may cause the trustee to act, a compulsion by a court is inadmissible, a resulting legal transaction is void.

How a Cook Islands Asset Protection Trust works

Protecting assets in a trust abroad mean retaining control over the assets and relinquishing ownership. Because only what is in your property you can lose too. In doing so, the advantages of foreign legislation are exploited: this legislation creates a significant protective layer between creditors and their own assets. The protections that a Cook Islands Asset Protection Trust offers range from privacy to bulletproof investment protection. In many cases, a combination of different jurisdictions is used for maximum security and discretion.

Avoidance of legal disputes: In the case of a legal confrontation, the real winners are often the lawyers. An avoided complaint is almost always a far more favorable result than an exhausting legal dispute. The first step in asset protection is to create the privacy of your finances. Experienced creditors choose their goals very carefully. Consequently, this means that a potential future creditor will first look for prey that is within his reach and achievable. If your fortune is easily recognizable to resourceful creditors, you are the ideal candidate for litigation. However, once you have pasted the externally understandable image of your finances behind an effective privacy screen, the motivation of your counterparty diminishes noticeably and that’s exactly what a Cook Islands Trust can quite legally achieve.

Staying above court rulings: If you ever find yourself in a disadvantageous situation, you were already so far-sighted in advance and protected yourself accordingly with the help of an asset protection trust. To do so, we use only the legislation of those countries that have a long and rich history in asset protection and an unblemished asset protection reputation. By far the best instrument for obtaining the highest level of asset protection is the Cook Islands Asset Protection Trust. Foreign court judgments are generally not recognized and licensed trustees must and will not bow to foreign judgments.

If your assets are in a trusted trust that withstands legal pressure because of its clean design, then you will behave in accordance with the law and your trust structure secures your assets. The Trust is the legal owner of all shares of a company abroad, such as a Swiss public limited company (AG) or a Limited Liability Company (LLC). In this way, you can manage the business as a director or authorized representative of the company. You always have control over the whereabouts of your assets. If you are under legal pressure, you can rely on the regulated, licensed and foreign trustee. The German court judgments are not interested at all. The trustee is strictly bound by your specifications. Your assets will remain in a safe haven and once the legal waters have smoothed, simply take over again the role of Managing Director.

The roles of participants in an asset protection trust

The simplest way to understand the structure of an asset protection trust in the Cook Islands is to understand the different roles of participants in such a structure:

Grantor / Settlor

The Grantor / Settlor (Trustor) is the person who establishes the Trust and transfers own assets (real estate, movables, capital, etc.) to the Trust by way of transfer. If you decide to establish a trust abroad, then you are the settlor.

Beneficiaries

Beneficiaries are the group of people who receive financial or other benefits from the Trust. You will probably also want to favor yourself during your lifetime or your partner, your children and other descendants, even unborn grandchildren or great-grandchildren can be considered. If you wish, this can also be the case for other relatives or friends, and you can also benefit charitable organizations. You have complete freedom to decide which natural or legal persons should be included in the exclusive circle of beneficiaries.

Trustee (Trustee)

The trustee (trustee) of an asset protection trust is responsible for managing the trust and is responsible for implementing the wishes of the settlor. This includes the protection of the assets but also the scheduled distribution to the beneficiaries.

Protector

The protector monitors the actions of the trustee, advises the trustee, and informs him of the needs of the beneficiaries. The protector also has the power to replace the trustee with another trustee, if necessary. The purpose of appointing a Protector is to ensure that the Trustee never loses sight of the intentions of the Settlor and properly implements his wishes. The protector thus has a watchdog function and intervenes if necessary.

Benefits of a foreign asset protection trust

The primary advantage of a trust is the protection it offers. The assets are sustainably beyond the reach of creditors and court judgments. A European court can not force a foreign trustee to sell assets in the trust. offshore trust asset protection is extremely powerful tool to protect your assets. If a creditor decided to attack their values held in a Cook Islands Trust, they would be forced to initiate a very costly and complex process in the Cook Islands. Not to mention the time and effort involved. This fact alone already has enormous deterrent potential.

It is very unlikely that a believer will take this stony path. It is even more unlikely that the case will actually be brought before a foreign court and a case will be opened. With almost certain probability, a creditor will certainly not succeed in gaining control over your assets, because he does not know anything about your trust. In the meantime, the period of contestation runs unchecked, so time is working perfectly in your favor.

In the Cook Islands, you can appoint yourself as the sole beneficiary of your trust structure. Each appointed trustee must have a special license and is subject to regular strict controls. In the Cook Islands, the trustees must even be positioned so that an insurance company secures your assets. If a trustee does not agree with your plans, you can recall them at any time and replace them with a new trustee of your choice. This grants you substantial control over your assets, although technically nothing is in your personal property that could be taken away from you in a process. As a result, your assets are safe from unauthorized access by creditors, legal adversaries of all kinds, the arbitrariness of many judges, and you are always in control. In most cases, the countervailability of capital transfers into the trust is limited to only one year. As a result, your assets are safe solely on the basis of applicable laws in the state of residence of the Trust.

The extremely short grace period of asset relocation of just one year makes the Cook Islands the first choice when it comes to asset protection trusts. In the short term, the effectiveness of the protection mechanism is extremely fast, starting with the deposit of assets into the trust and ending one year later. If the opponent does not know the trust, the time runs unnoticed in your favor. If proceedings are initiated within the deadline, this must always take place in the Cook Islands. This is extremely demotivating for your counterparties, because in addition to time and money, strong nerves are required for a legal battle on the international stage – with an uncertain outcome. In addition, the plaintiff must be able to demonstrate credibly that the establishment of the trust has taken place in a fraudulent manner, which in most cases is practically impossible. At Cook Islands Trust, even the world’s dreaded American courts have already lost their teeth. By the way, the legal system of the Cook Islands does not know any insolvency law.

An Overview of the Key Benefits of the Asset Protection Trust

Foreign court judgments are NOT recognized

Court judgments made outside the Cook Islands are not recognized on a flat-rate basis and must be reconsidered before a Cook Islands court with much effort and little chance of success.

Visibility and seizure protection on your assets

Property that is once in the Trust is not visible to outsiders and because it is no longer in your personal property and not attachable.

Protection against capital controls, expropriation, and other impossibilities

Once your assets are abroad, they can no longer be controlled by capital controls by the state. You then no longer need to fear expropriation.

Estate planning according to your taste – avoidance of the compulsory portion

Surely you have your own ideas of who should profit from your estate one day. With a trust can even bypass the mandatory part. In this case, a potential entitled person will in vain bite his teeth.

Legal and planning security across generations

With a Trust in the Cook Islands, you can be sure that your wishes will be put into action according to your Trust Deeds or Letter of Wishes. The local law of the Cook Islands is on your side and secures your fortune over generations.

Look on the brains of desperate politicians calmly

Bail-in, bail-out, negative interest rates, haircut, euro crisis, real estate crisis, debt crisis, wars, corruption, infidelity, fraud – who should pay for it? With a Trust in the Cook Islands, you are safe from political illusions. Do not be held responsible by irresponsible politicians.

Offshore Banking

When it comes to effective asset protection, one of the fundamental pillars of this project is a reliable bank account. We work exclusively with reputable and stable financial institutions and are also long-time introducers for reputable Swiss banks. Typically, your bank account will be opened on behalf of an offshore company, creating an additional layer of protection. We currently offer account connections in the Cook Islands, Switzerland, and Puerto Rico.

Everyone has a very individual need for asset protection and should definitely take action in this regard before legal hardships occur. Due to the variety of tools and the complexity of the topic, it is also very important that you consult with a specialist so that you understand the mechanisms and modes of action and in this way, we can secure your prosperity and that of your family.