Protecting Real Estate From Lawsuits And Creditors
Florida homestead laws may give a false sense of security to property owners. Your Florida homestead is protected under our state constitution without any limits on value. However, any homestead in a city is protected only to the extent it doesn’t exceed one-half acre. Second homes, third homes, office buildings and rental property are not protected by Florida homestead laws.
At the Law Offices of Frye & Vazquez, P.L., our lawyers help clients protect real estate assets from lawsuits and creditors. From our office in Miami, we represent homeowners, business owners, landlords and real estate investors throughout South Florida. To learn more about how our attorneys can help you protect your real estate assets from lawsuits and creditors, please contact us to arrange a consultation.
Protecting You From Liability
Since Florida’s homestead protection does not extend to investment or rental properties, it’s important to protect those assets from lawsuits and creditors.
Many married Florida couples routinely titled their real estate holdings as being held “jointly as tenants by the entirety,” thinking that this methodology will protect the property from creditors of either spouse. However, court rulings diminished the protection afforded by this title. There are also circumstances, such as death and divorce, which will break this tenancy.
Real estate holdings placed in S corporations generally protect corporation owners from personal liability that occurs within the property, but other assets they own may not be protected. For example, a doctor with a malpractice judgment against him or her could be exposed to losing ownership of a second home or other property owned through his or her stock in the S corporation.
Recent changes in Florida laws have made a specific type of limited liability company, or LLC, the entity of choice for real estate owners concerned with asset protection. An LLC will protect you from personal liability arising from the property in question. It will also protect your other property holdings from liability.
Our attorneys will weigh the benefits of each type of entity with respect to your specific situation. We then devise a workable strategy that protects your real estate assets.
Our Recommended Strategy
Other than your homestead property, to maximize protection, we generally recommend a separate LLC (multiple member) for each investment or income property you own. To provide an additional level of protection and to simplify the tax filing process, your separate LLC’s should be held in an LLLP (Limited Liability Limited Partnership), which we would establish for you as well.
Bottom Line: Plan Now!
The bottom line is that protecting your family and all of your assets from outsiders should be a major concern for all clients. Putting off proper planning until after the DUI accident, the medical malpractice occurrence or the negligent act on your property could have potentially devastating consequences. After the occurrence of the dreaded events, it is next to impossible to implement effective protection of your exposed assets.
Learn more about protection of real estate assets.
We Will Ensure Your Real Estate Holdings Are Properly Protected
From our offices in Miami, we provide estate planning, asset protection and probate services for individuals and families in Miami-Dade County, Broward County and communities throughout South Florida. For more information or to schedule a consultation with a Miami real estate asset protection attorney at the Law Offices of Frye & Vazquez, P.L., call 305-508-5749 or fill out the contact form on this website.