Asset Protection Expert

The Best Solution in Offshore Asset Protection

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.

Here are some key features and benefits of Cook Islands Trusts:

Asset Protection

Cook Islands Trusts are primarily known for their asset protection provisions. Assets held in a Cook Islands Trust are shielded from potential creditors, lawsuits, or judgments. The trust can create a barrier between the assets and potential claimants, making it more difficult for people to seize the assets.

Burden of Proof

The Cooks Islands laws require the plaintiff to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the settlor set up the Cook Islands trust with the intention and purpose of defrauding that particular creditor or plaintiff. Again, this is a formidable burden most will not be able to meet.


Cook Islands Trusts offer a high level of confidentiality and privacy. The trust documents are not publicly filed with any government agency, and the identities of the settlor and beneficiaries can remain confidential.

Qualified Trustee Requirement

Cook Islands law requires that at least one trustee of a Cook Islands trust be a licensed trustee company in the Cook Islands. This ensures that professional fiduciaries with expertise in trust administration are involved in managing the trust.

Foreign Jurisdiction

Cook Islands Courts do not recognize foreign courts’ orders or judgments. If a plaintiff wins a lawsuit against a Cook Islands Trust settlor in the U.S. or elsewhere, the courts in the Cook Islands will not recognize the judgment. The plaintiff will have to travel to the Cook Islands and plead the case there under the law of the Cooks Islands. This is a burden that can dissuade most plaintiffs or creditors.

Statute of Limitations

The Cook Islands has a relatively short statute of limitations for fraudulent transfers. After a specified period of generally two years, a creditor's claim challenging a transfer to a Cook Islands Trust becomes barred


Cook Islands Trusts offer flexibility in terms of trust structures. They allow for a variety of provisions, such as discretionary distributions, the appointment and removal of trustees, and the ability to change the governing law of the trust.

Experienced Professional Services

The Cook Islands has a well-established financial and legal industry with experienced professionals who specialize in setting up and administering trusts for offshore clients. These professionals can assist in navigating legal requirements and ensuring compliance with local regulations.

Create Your Own Cook Islands Trust

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:


A Cook Islands Trust requires a Cook Islands licensed trustee. The trustee holds legal title to all trust assets and is required to hold and manage the assets according to the terms of the trust. You will be provided recommendations for a trustee.


The beneficiaries are those that may receive distributions from the trust. The settlor, settlor’s spouse, children, and other family members are usually named as beneficiaries.

Trust Protector​

A trust protector can be appointed by the settlor to oversee actions taken by the trustee. A trust protector can also be utilized to remove and replace a trustee if needed. You will be provided recommendations for a trust protector.

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.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs) regarding Cook Islands Trusts:

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.

Asset Protection Package


You will be provided the following:

  • Cook Islands Trust Template.
  • Instructions for Completing your Cook Islands Trust Template.
  • Instructions to share with you CPA for completing any IRS and FinCEN reporting requirements.
  • Recommendations for highly reputable trust companies, protectors, CPAs, and Swiss Investment Advisors.
  • 30 days of email support.