Goes Global to Better Preserve Wealth for Local Families

John W. Ambrecht

John W. Ambrecht

Santa Barbara is home to an expatriate community needing expertise in coordinating United States tax and trust laws with the laws of other countries so wealth and power may transition to subsequent generations.

This is a specialty of attorney John W. Ambrecht, founder of Ambrecht & Associates, the estate-planning and tax-specialty Montecito-based law firm he founded in 1980.

Speaking on this subject at a seminar a few years ago, Ambrecht participated on a panel with lawyers from India and Italy, as well as a solicitor from the United Kingdom.

“I gave my typical three-generations approach, and the UK solicitor looked at me and said, ‘We have families in the UK that have been in business for 20 generations.’ He said he felt so American,” Ambrecht said.

To access the large bank of knowledge in the United Kingdom on how best to design international planning for families and family businesses, Ambrecht was invited to and did join STEP World Wide.

STEP World Wide is a London-based global organization of lawyers and planners who incorporate an international tax and family perspective.

Ambrecht has now brought that knowledge home to share, and recently established the first STEP Special Interest Group (SIG) in the U.S. for Business Families.
The Business Families SIG is an adjunct of the STEP Los Angeles branch office. Ambrecht is the liaison chairperson and sits on the STEP board. SIG’s purpose is to raise the profile, understanding and impact of family dynamics in family business succession.

For the Business Families SIG members, Ambrecht is arranging a presentation, slated for September, by Dennis Jaffe, a family-business consultant and author of Cross Cultures: How Global Families Negotiate Change Across Generations.

This is to be the first of a number of educational opportunities for STEP SIG Business Family Members.
To learn more about tax and estate planning issues from an international perspective, those interested can call Ambrecht & Associates, 965-1329, or visit www.taxlawsb.com. For more information on STEP, visit www.STEP.org.

— Jennifer Goddard Combs for Ambrecht & Associates.