What is a Family Trust?

A Family Trust is an entity, which holds and owns property for the benefit of your family. It allows you to transfer the ownership of property and other assets out of your own name so that they can be protected for a variety of reasons, whilst still maintaining control over them. The formation of family trusts is a practice that is becoming increasingly common for family units, individuals and entrepreneurs alike. No longer are trusts only available to the wealthy, today trusts are working tools that can help protect your property from third party claimants.

In New Zealand, people are becoming increasingly aware of the advantages that trusts offer and are beginning to establish trusts earlier in their lives, for the purpose of obtaining maximum benefit from the protection they offer.

Some common purposes of establishing a Family Trust are to protect the family home (and other assets) from third party creditors, protect against relationship property claims and minimise personal wealth in relation to asset tested benefits such as residential care subsidies.

If you own assets, are in a serious relationship, have children or own your own business, then setting up a Family Trust is something you should consider.

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