Dentists and other health care professionals are required to carry malpractice insurance for a reason: over the course of their careers, they are more likely to encounter a lawsuit than people working in almost any other field. Sometimes, malpractice claims are malicious, seeking to take advantage of a dentist’s high potential income for personal gain.
However, Arkansas dentists do not need to take unnecessary chances. Here are several asset-protection strategies that can help defend your practice, wealth, and assets from frivolous litigation.
Why Asset Protection Is Important for Dentists
A significant percentage of all medical malpractice lawsuits involve dentists. In fact, almost 90% of dentists have reported they are afraid of being sued by patients.
Even if dentists are not as likely to face litigation as surgeons or anesthesiologists, they are still unusually vulnerable to liability risk. If you have not taken the right steps to protect and separate your business and personal assets, an aggressive claim could jeopardize not just your practice but your personal possessions as well.
Asset Protection Strategies for Dentists
Dentists have many options to protect their assets, livelihood, and prized possessions. If you have not already, you may wish to consider:
- Forming a business entity for your practice. Most dentists and physicians in private practice form a business entity. Transforming your practice into an LLC, PLLC, or corporation can shield your personal possessions and finances from most malpractice claims. It can also help you save big money on taxes.
- Forming a business entity for your other business assets. Dental tools and equipment can cost a lot of money, and you would not want to risk losing them in a malpractice claim. You may be able to form a separate business entity to own these tools, which can then be leased back to your practice. By forming such separate business entities, you further protect your assets by limiting what a litigant can pursue when suing your practice.
- Planning for retirement. Even if you have just begun to practice, wisely investing your savings into an IRA can provide tax advantages now and later.
- Estate planning. This important step can help you cement your legacy while similarly saving money and staving off inconvenience in the present.
- Creating trusts. A domestic asset protection trust (DAPT) allows you to transfer control of certain assets to the trust while still receiving dividends. You receive the benefits of the trust while its assets are protected from litigants and creditors.
- Other asset protection strategies. Your estate planning attorney can help you protect your personal wealth from other challenges, too. For example, if you are getting married, you may need to consider a pre-nuptial agreement.
Contact Us Today
Quraishi Law & Wealth knows that every dental practice in Arkansas has its own values, priorities, and aspirations. We can help you create a custom-build asset protection plan that limits your liability, protects your assets, and saves you money.
Send Quraishi Law & Wealth a message online to schedule your initial consultation and begin exploring your options for a more profitable, better-protected business.