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Family Wealth Litigation    
Family Wealth

It is one thing to make money, but another to know how to manage it. A successful businessman may find that the skills he used to amass his wealth are very different than the ones he will need to preserve it for future generations. Family members with little financial experience can suddenly be confronted with the responsibility of an inherited fortune. Whether our clients are entrepreneurs who want to ensure that their children benefit from their recent success, or inheritors of old family fortunes, we offer strategies for family wealth planning.

We can certainly help our clients set up their wills or make gifts to their children and relatives. But we can also set up more sophisticated mechanisms for the transfer and management of wealth. We have the financial know-how to consolidate or distribute wealth in a number of ways. Our lawyers are familiar with setting up trusts or corporations to invest the wealth and handle the administration of assets. Such corporations could be directed by appointed professionals, by members of the family, or by a mix of both to provide necessary business savvy and to maintain a balance in delicate family relationships. Whether we are creating a sibling partnership or a cousin consortium, we make sure that the governance of such a family corporation will be effective, accountable, stable enough to last generations and flexible enough to adapt to new family circumstances.

Due to their international experience in international trade, our lawyers are comfortable in dealing with foreign officials and financial institutions for the setting up of trusts or corporations abroad to manage family wealth. We have assisted foreign trustees in enforcing in Lebanon the edicts of foreign wills. We have also worked with foreign institutions that manage large family fortunes with assets in Lebanon or the Middle East.

Inheritance in the Middle East tends to be complicated, particularly in Lebanon, as different rules apply to each of the separate religious confessions. However, irrespective of the community to which our clients may belong, we can help each client take advantage of any special privileges that apply to their circumstances and structure any inheritance or transfer of wealth so as to minimize heavy tax exposure.

We are fully aware that decisions family members take with respect to the management of the family fortune take into consideration very intimate and personal relationships, and henceforth, must be handled delicately. We pay special attention to the needs and feelings of our clients and their relationships with other family members to make sure that the decisions taken reflect their desires, and that the family will always retain effective control of its assets. The investment strategy we offer a particular client will be tailored to how risk averse he or she may be and to their particular needs- emphasizing quick gains or safer, long term growth.

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