Old Families / Nobility
Preserving family-owned wealth over several generations in this day and age constitutes a particular challenge.
The maintenance of inherited art and cultural property requires great financial expenditures which are impossible to be covered by the
generated income alone. The costs of protecting monuments and of assumed building encumbrances put a strain on current liquidity;
foundation arrangements can contribute to including in the financing concept private capital or public funds.
We advise old families in respect of their wealth, in particular families that are members of the nobility and of former reigning houses.
This also includes foundations established following the dissolution of entailed estates.
In particular when advising small and medium-sized family enterprises the focus is on the persona of the entrepreneur and not so much
on the operative business. Family enterprises which after the war were built-up with great commitment today are facing a generation change,
and we will advise and support you in all relevant company law and tax law matters.
We advise family enterprises engaged in various lines of business regardless of their legal form.
Many of our clients have already gone public, but continue to hold the majority of shares or the majority of votes in their enterprises.
The reasons for wanting to sell a family enterprise are manifold. The lack of entrepreneurial skill on the part of the next generation can be as significant a factor as the conviction as a sole proprietorship to be insufficiently equipped to compete in a global market environment.
Once the family enterprise is sold there will be a need for reorientation as the business is no longer the common denominator,
the ‘glue’ that kept everything together for so many years. At this point it will become necessary to establish the optimum structure for the management and transfer to the next generation of a large family fortune.
We advise many family entrepreneurs on private and asset-related matters once they have sold their business.
Among our clients are large German foundations that we advise on their legal structure and on the tax aspects of Charity Law,
but also in respect of conceptual matters. Moreover, we advise family foundations, the establishment of foundations, enterprise foundations
and foundations succeeding to disentailed family estates.
Many of our clients take on entrepreneurial responsibility very early on in life, either by taking over and continuing to operate the family enterprise or by starting their own business.
We will support you in structuring your business and – in particular following a generation change – implement your ideas.
In addition to providing company and corporate legal advice we consider it of utmost importance to advise and support you in tax law questions. Entrepreneurial commitment also requires the taking of decisions in the private domain.
We will advise you on arrangements under estate law and family law aspects with a view to securing personal and business assets.
We advise and support major private collectors in acquiring art and building their art collections, in insurance matters, in questions regarding international lending of art objects, including the question of protection of cultural property, in the assessment of art for tax purposes, but also in the establishment of museums and the consideration, under the aegis of a publicly-operated museum, to present permanently to the public their entire collection or portions thereof.
A focal point of our consulting services is the connection between art and tax law. In this context, questions of assessment play a part as does the question of legal arrangements under estate tax law, estate administration and will execution aspects
When art collections or portions thereof are put up for sale we are called upon in our capacity as independent advisers to give advice and support in respect of all legal aspects up to and including contract conclusion.