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Trust & Wealth Structuring


Families wanting to build, protect and enjoy wealth across multiple generations face multiple challenges including:

  • ensuring expert management as successive generations inherit

  • managing situations where some family members work in the business and others do not

  • minimising the impact of marital and other family relationship breakdowns

  • preventing and minimising inheritance disputes

  • avoiding wealth dilution when the number of family members grows.

Well thought-out structures address all these issues. They avoid lengthy and complex probate applications, potentially in multiple jurisdictions. They enable continued investment and diversification as new opportunities arise.

Although the issues facing wealthy families are universal, solutions are unique to each family. The structure best for you will take into account your family situation, assets and relationships. Only then can it support your goals for:

  • Succession planning 

  • Continued investment and growth

  • Asset protection

  • Tax efficiency

Succession planning

Succession planning is the first step for any family wanting to preserve and grow its wealth. Members of the younger generation may not have the expertise to manage existing assets – or they may be uninterested or unsuitable. Some may live in other countries and be unavailable or ineligible to manage a portfolio closely. 

Ownership may be passed to a trustee. In this case, there is important work to be done in:

  • Designing the structure of the trust and drafting documentation

  • Addressing government and compliance issues

  • Injecting assets into the trust

  • Running and maintaining the structure 

Asset protection

Changing relationships – in particular changes of marital status or of partner – can severely damage family wealth. The risks are more complex in multi-generational extended families, especially when members have international citizenship or residency status.

Businesses with a strong asset pool also attract attention from hungry creditors and other third parties. Some industries face a high risk of litigation, and a structure to separate assets from operating entities is beneficial.

We consider all these factors in deciding the best asset protection strategies to apply. 

Our experience

We are experienced across the full spectrum of trusts and other structures used to protect and manage wealth. We can identify the most suitable to protect your family assets for future generations. 

We assess the needs and desires of all stakeholders – trustees, owners, managers, protectors, administration staff and beneficiaries - to devise and establish the best structure for your situation.  Depending on the case, we assist with trust deeds, resolutions, articles of association, shareholders’ agreements and other documentation which sets out the goals and principles which apply.

Recent matters

Recent matters handled include:

  • Restructuring a family conglomerate including multiple businesses with different risk profiles, in order to protect safe assets from litigation risk

  • Migration and tax planning for multiple family members, including marital status, employment status and tax residency, to improve tax efficiency while aligning with the goals of the matriarch and patriarch

  • Restructuring major family enterprises so that non-executive family members can benefit from them; management are properly acknowledged and rewarded, and to ensure that assets can be managed proactively even during probate to prevent competitive disadvantage

  • Creating a structure to care for a modern family relationship, which might not be possible to implement via a will

  • Creating a pre-IPO trust to hold family shares in the business, delivering security and stability for investors as well as tax advantages for the founder 

  • Establishing philanthropic and charitable trusts

  • Establishing trusts for family members with disability or otherwise unable to manage their own financial affairs

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