Most helpful critical review
28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
Well-written But Incomplete Discussion of a Useful Estate Planning Device
on July 10, 2009
The authors offer a clear and highly persuasive discussion of the Limited Liability Company as a device for minimizing family strife and preserving family real estate over time. Nolo-published products always rate high on my readability scale versus other legal publishers' treatises and textbooks.
However, in their efforts to advocate for this particular means of preserving a particular kind of family property, the authors utterly failed to mention, let alone discuss, the fact that an LLC, like its close relative the corporation, can be treated as a nullity if its members fail to meet certain conditions or if they engage in certain misbehavior.
Veil-piercing is never mentioned, never discussed, even though the family-owned and run LLC the authors recommend setting up will be ripe for the very kinds of abuses (commingled funds, members who commit torts while on LLC-owned property, failure to file forms or pay franchise fees) that would lead a court to utterly disregard the fictitious entity.
This is a shame, because, while the book is very helpful to someone like me, who would use it as a starting point from which to recommend a comprehensive estate plan, it may be misleading to a lay person. I would have given it four stars if it had included a caveat about the potential for disregard of the quasi-corporate entity, five stars had it included a whole chapter.