Offshore jurisdictions are often considered for asset protection due to their favorable privacy laws and strong asset protection statutes.
A Cook Islands Trust is widely regarded as the best solution in offshore asset protection among legal practitioners. The Cook Islands is an island nation in the South Pacific Ocean and has the most protective laws in place to defend trusts against a wide variety of legal threats and lawsuits. Cook Islands Trusts are used as a form of offshore asset protection due to the strong asset protection provisions provided by the Cook Islands International Trusts Act.
The history of Cook Islands Trusts dates back to the mid-1980s when the Cook Islands enacted the International Trusts Act in 1984, with subsequent amendments in 1989 and 1996. The legislation was specifically designed to create the best possible environment for asset protection trusts and to attract international clients seeking enhanced protection for their assets.
The Cook Islands recognized the potential demand for trusts that offered robust asset protection provisions, confidentiality, and a flexible legal framework. They aimed to establish themselves as a reputable offshore jurisdiction for international asset protection planning.
Over the years, the Cook Islands has continued to refine its trust laws and enhance its reputation as a jurisdiction for asset protection. They have remained committed to providing a stable legal environment for Cook Islands Tusts and maintaining a favorable business climate for international clients seeking asset protection solutions.
The Trust Deed is the document that outlines how the assets should be managed in the trust and sets out the powers, duties, and responsibilities of the settlor, trustee, trust protector, and beneficiaries. A standard Cook Islands Trust Deed will be provided with your purchase, along with instructions for you to complete.
In order to complete your trust document, you will need to decide and complete the following parties:
The Cook Islands trustee will then need to approve the management of the trust and you as a client. Trust companies in the Cook Islands conduct background checks on potential clients seeking to establish a trust. These checks generally include the settlor’s identity, background, and financial history. Trustees are required to perform due diligence to comply with international money laundering regulations. Professional trustees are licensed and regulated by government bodies in the Cook Islands.
Once your trust is approved by the Cook Islands trustee, you can open a foreign bank account in the name of your trust. It is important to move trust funds outside of your home jurisdiction to receive all the advantages of offshore asset protection. Your offshore bank account does not need to be in the Cook Islands, it can be domiciled in established banking centers such as Switzerland. You will be provided recommendations for a Swiss investment advisor.
A Cook Islands Trust is a type of offshore trust established under the Cook Islands International Trusts Act. It is commonly used for asset protection purposes and offers strong legal protections for trust assets.
A Cook Islands Trust provides asset protection by creating a legal barrier between the trust assets and potential creditors or claimants. The trust’s strong asset protection provisions and the unique statute of limitations make it difficult for creditors to access the assets placed in the trust.
No, Cook Islands Trusts are not exclusively for the super-wealthy. They can be established by individuals, families, or businesses seeking asset protection for various reasons, including protecting personal wealth, preserving family assets, or shielding business assets from potential risks. Any individual with over $250,000 of liquid assets could benefit from the protection and security provided by a Cook Islands Trust.
Yes, it is possible to be a beneficiary of your own Cook Islands Trust. These trusts are known as self-settled trusts where the settlor can also be a discretionary beneficiary. This allows individuals to retain some level of control and access to the trust assets while still enjoying the asset protection benefits.
Yes, Cook Islands Trusts are legal and legitimate when established and managed in compliance with Cook Islands law and applicable regulations. The Cook Islands has a well-established legal framework for international trusts and has been recognized as a reputable offshore jurisdiction for asset protection planning.
While Cook Islands Trusts are often used by international clients seeking offshore asset protection, the vast majority of individuals setting up Cook Islands Trusts are from the U.S.
The cost of establishing a Cook Islands trust can vary depending on factors such as the complexity of the trust structure, the involvement of professional advisors, and any ongoing administrative fees. Law firms can charge fees in the tens of thousands of dollars for a Cook Islands Trust; however, we are able to offer the same document for a fraction of the cost.
Yes, Cook Islands Trusts offer a high level of confidentiality. Trust documents, including the trust deed and financial information, are not publicly filed or disclosed. This helps maintain the privacy of the settlor, beneficiaries, and trust details.
If you have additional questions or need assistance completing your trust deed or working with a professional Cook Islands Trustee or offshore bank, you can request assistance via email for 30 days after your purchase.
You will be provided the following:
Annually Trustee Fee $3,500
Hourly Trustee Fee $250
Trust Protector Fee $1,000 initially/annually
Hourly Trust Protector Fee $200
IRS or FinCEN reporting requirements. (To be completed by your CPA) We can also refer you to a CPA.
International banking fees, which are generally comparable to domestic banking fees.