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Offshore Trust Planning

Selecting a Trustee

There are rigorous requirements for, and the intense responsibility placed upon, a trustee of an offshore trust. So, it should be apparent that the careful selection of the trustee is of paramount importance to the success of the parties that benefit from the trust. Its security, viability, and ability to work for the beneficiaries are wholly dependent upon successful management of the trust by a diligent trustee company. The trustee will have full, legal ownership of the trust, its property and assets. As such, this position should be strictly limited to renowned institutions or service providers. That is, those with proven experience and track records in this area and that have reputations for successfully managing trusts. There can be no compromises in this area.

Cook Islands Nevis Flag

Where to form an Offshore Trust

Offshore trusts are generally located in jurisdictions that have legal systems founded upon the principles of English common law. Alternatively, some which have adopted it as applicable to trusts. This is done with the express intent of providing a faithful offshore trust service. Jurisdictions such as Switzerland and Luxembourg can be counted among the latter.

Best Jurisdictions

The best jurisdictions generally accepted as solid bases for offshore trust formations are as follows:
Channel Islands, China & Hong Kong, Cook Islands, Isle of Man, Luxembourg, Mauritius, Nevis, Seychelles, Singapore, and Switzerland.

This is a representative sample and is not necessarily an all-inclusive list.

Here are some offshore trust facts:

  • The Cook Islands offshore trust is considered the strongest asset protection tool worldwide.
  • The types of trusts we most commonly establish are Grantor Trusts. As such, the reporting requirements and legal compliance issues are simplified.
  • In many jurisdictions, the trust must have a licensed trust company serve as trustee, plus domestic or foreign individual and/or private IBC can additionally act as trustee.
  • The trust can also have all of the US estate tax provisions, such as A and B trusts and beneficiaries that a domestic trust has.
  • Since an offshore trust is in another jurisdiction, the foreign trustee can refuse to comply with US court orders to release trust assets.
  • Your assets can remain safe and secure and out of harm’s way.

Asset Protection

If your goal is to protect yourself from lawsuits and legal opponents, it is critical that your offshore plan be carefully constructed. Simply by forming an offshore trust in some jurisdictions, you immediately place a tested lawsuit protection shield between your legal enemy and your assets.

It is possible that your opposition would be forced with posting a $25,000 non-refundable bond. That is required to have the case put before a review board to justify if the case is suitable for court. There are many advantageous laws that help foreign investors in the recommended jurisdictions. can assist with your offshore trust planning.