A corporate trust provider or family office can act as trustee or take another role in your family trust. All kind of assets can be held in a trust, and trusts are a great instrument for protecting wealth and privacy, as well as compliant tax planning. For generations, trusts have been used to protect wealthy families’ assets from tough economic and political conditions.
Wealth advisors in Switzerland very often suggest the use of trusts as a wealth planning instrument to their clients. Although there is no Swiss Trust law as such, “Swiss trusts” are, in practice, possible when you use a Swiss trustee (a trustee located in Switzerland) to manage and administer your trust in Switzerland.
What is a Trust?
For most of us, a trust is a very complicated structure to understand, but it can be an excellent wealth planning tool, especially for wealthy, international families. Trusts are used by numerous affluent and well-known families around the world, and are often suggested by their family offices, as a way of separating some or all of their assets.
A trust can best be described as a legal arrangement (a legal form) through which the legal ownership of assets is transferred to the trustee in order to keep these assets for the benefit of others (the beneficiaries); the equitable ownership of the assets is thus deemed to be held by the beneficiaries. Trusts are established based on the trust law of common-law countries and date back to the time of the Crusades. Although trusts are a common-law structure, the trust and trustee can be based in Switzerland; a “Swiss trust”.