Comprehensive Advisory Services

Comprehensive Estate Planning Advisory Services

Mr. Tan was a successful businessman and held stakes in various businesses and properties. For various reasons, he used several nominees to hold his assets. He was receiving a good monthly income, in excess of RM30,000 through these nominees. It was estimated that the value of his investments amounted to RM10 million.

Unfortunately, Mr. Tan died at the young age of 42 leaving behind his wife, a 17 year old son and a 15 year old daughter. Mrs. Tan soon found out that all her husband’s bank accounts were frozen and the monthly income stream from his nominees had stopped. Since Mrs. Tan is a homemaker, she does not have any idea on how to run her husband’s businesses. Due to the time taken for the estate administration process, she had to borrow from her friends and relatives to pay for her family’s monthly expenses. Because of lack of funds for the older child’s university education, she was later forced to sell her husband’ shares in the business at a steeply discounted price of RM2 million.

During Mr. Tan’s lifetime, he verbally told his wife that if he were to pass on, he wanted to allocate sufficient funds to pay for both his children’s maintenance and education expenses. He also told her that he was very confident that his business partners would be honourable enough to buy over his shares at fair value upon his demise. However, no action was taken to formalise his wishes and instructions and unfortunately his partners failed to honour their word. Thus, due to lack of proper planning, Mr. Tan’s family was deprived of the monthly income stream and capital funds of RM8 million.

The tragedy can be avoided if Mr. Tan had followed and executed a professionally constructed estate plan during his lifetime. A comprehensive estate plan should include the following features:

> Proper disposition of assets including cancellation of liabilities and protection from creditors
> Shorten undesirable long legal process
> Ensuring effective execution and avoiding disputes
> Providing sufficient funds for sustenance of family and dependants and in case of incapacity
> Strategies to maintain liquidity and tax efficiency
> Maintaining control through properly structured trusts, prevent squandering and providing incentives
> Appointing a licensed professional trust corporation as personal representative to ensure efficient and impartial execution
> Preserving confidentiality of specific shareholdings
> Protecting the value of business through setting up proper business succession planning
> Protecting and preserving wealth through the use of special purpose vehicles or instruments over multiple generations if desired

Not sure whether you need? Check if any of the following situations applies to you:

> I have no Will
> I have a Will but it may not reflect my present position
> I am no longer in touch with the appointed executor / guardian
> I have not tracked my assets and liabilities properly
> My children are minors
> I have spouse / child who do not know the value of money
> My children are beneficiaries to my insurance policy but they are still young
> I have a child with special needs
> I have dependents outside my family
> I am not sure who to trust to manage my wealth after I am gone
> My son / daughter-in- law often asks for money
> My spouse is unfamiliar with business / financial matters
> My marital status has changed recently
> I am not sure if my funds can be accessed when I am mentally / physically incapacitated
> I have acquired some new asset/s which are not in my Will
> I have assets in joint names
> I have assets overseas
> I would like to give something back to society but do not know how
> I am a Muslim convert and wonder what will happen to my estate
> I work well with my business partners but their heirs may be a problem
> I am concerned that my business becomes fragmented when inherited by my children
> I would like to see my family business continuing through the generations
> My business is exposed to high risks
> Some of my assets are held in nominee names

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