I am trying to figure out what would be the best approach for asset protection for 320 acres of land that my aunt owns in South Dakota. The land has been in the family since the 1800’s but my aunt is not doing and may not be around much longer. The land will be passed to my father and his sister according to her will but would like to transfer prior to her death. We are trying to figure out the best way to transfer the property or sell it to avoid a large tax liability or capital gains. Thanks

I am not an attorney or asset protection specialist. One way that I have heard of doing this is using a Family Limited Partnership. The asset protection attorney will set your aunt up as the general partner and she can gift her ownership to the limited partners (her heirs) over time.

Please talk to a live lawyer before you try this though. It can get confusing.

any other input guys :slight_smile:

The best way to transfer without incurring capital gains taxes is by inheritance. This would be most easily accomplished by a will, but a will has to go through probate. Depending upon the cost of probate in your state, this could get expensive – both for attorney fees and court costs.

Your aunt can avoid probate by putting the property into a revocable trust which designates your father and your aunt as the beneficiaries in whatever proportion your aunt intends. Upon her death, the land will pass to your father and your aunt at its stepped up value, and, bypass probate completely.

Note that neither the will, nor the trust, avoids federal estate taxes if they apply.

Transfer to a family LLC or a family LP could achieve the same end result for the interest retained by your aunt. However, the revocable trust is probably the least expensive route if taxes are your only concern.

revocable trust is probably the best way to go (Dave T summed it up nicely). fairly easy and inexpensive to set-up and will likely accomphish what you are looking for. a FLP is much more expensive and complex and its really power in using it over long periods of time and for very large estates (well into 7 or even 8 figures).