Anyone who likes to go hiking, biking or camping probably knows what Gore-Tex is. The breathable, waterproof fabric made W.L. Gore and Associates into a huge success. The privately-held company hit #134 in Forbes’ most recent list of America’s largest private companies, with an estimated $3 billion in annual revenue.
Founder Bill Gore passed away in 1986 and his widow, Genevieve Gore, died on January 20, 2005. The couple, way back in 1972, finalized a trust to pass most of their stock in the company onto the children, and ultimately their grandchildren. They smartly planned ahead, realizing how valuable their Gore-Tex invention could become and how much growth their stock could achieve. So they funded the trust through a holding company, early on, to minimize estate taxes.
Wanting to treat their heirs equally, the Gores set up five equal shares, for their five children. They created a supplemental trust so that each of the grandchildren could receive an equal amount of stock as well.
The plan worked very well … Read more…
John Goodman is the 48-year old multimillionaire from Palm Beach, Florida who recently made headlines when it was publicly revealed that he adopted his 42-year old girlfriend to help protect the family fortune.
Goodman did this in the midst of criminal and civil legal proceedings pending against him. They arose from the February, 2010 drunk driving incident during which Goodman reportedly ran a stop sign, killed a 23-year old man, and fled the scene. When it was recently revealed that Goodman, in October of last year, had legally adopted his girlfriend, people across the country were outraged.
Goodman’s lawyer issued a statement defending the adoption. He states that the adoption was done to protect Goodman’s children, not to shield assets from the family of the slain driver who is suing him.
While Goodman has been bashed across the country for his legal maneuver, it actually makes sense from a probate law perspective. Years ago, Goodman placed $1.5 million into an irrevocable trust for his two children. By investing that money Read more…