Bend the Rules in Your Favor
Some preppers are wary of the legal system. Given the fact that laws can be arbitrary and enforcement can be excessive, I can’t blame say I blame them. That said, if you’re properly educated on the inner workings of the legal system, you can bend the rules in your favor. Those who know how to take advantage of laws can protect their privacy and reduce the risk of being exposed to a SHTF event. In this post, Ryan Reiffert, a corporate attorney based in San Antonio, Texas explains how to reduce risk using the legal system. You can read his blog on various other legal issues at ryanreiffert.com/blog.
1. OpSec & Anonymity – Using the Corporate Veil
Let’s say that your bug-out location is a piece of property in a small town a few hours from your main residence. Now, let’s say that you acquire that piece of property several years in advance of a SHTF situation. Someone might get curious as to who owns that piece of property and look it up in the local property records.
Well, if that property is owned by you, directly in your name, the person searching can now connect the dots. And, as big data evolves, those dots may get easier and easier to connect.
But now, suppose you form a corporation, partnership, or LLC with a non distinct name, which is used to buy the property. Much harder to connect the dots, right?
Obviously, you shouldn’t name your corporation after yourself, because that would be too easy to connect. You should name it something unrelated to yourself. You can even name it something weird or strange. That’s totally allowed.
In some states, someone could look up a corporation’s ownership and find out who’s behind it; but, in other states (such as Delaware, Nevada, Wyoming, New Mexico), public disclosure of a company’s owners is not required and therefore, “true” anonymity is achievable.
And, guess what? This doesn’t just apply to real estate. Your corporation could own a car, a pile of gold bars, or any other item.
2. More OpSec & Anonymity – The New Privacy Regulations
Under new privacy regulations and legislation such as the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) and CCPA (California Consumer Privacy Act), you may have the right to ask large tech firms to delete the data they have collected on you over the years.
If you’ve made some previous mistakes (for example, posting on social media about your prepping plans), you may be able to capitalize on these new privacy regulations to correct your past mistakes. For now, GDPR just applies to residents of the European Union, whereas the CCPA only applies to California residents. I highly recommend staying up to date on developments in privacy protection, as many people are taken advantage of.
3. Cycling your Canned Goods with Tax Deductions
Many other prepping experts recommend cycling canned goods. By cycling, you get rid of the canned goods about to expire and buy more, so that you always have a good supply of canned goods on hand.
One way to get rid of pre-expiry canned goods, obviously, is to eat them. But what if you have a gigantic pile of canned carrots and you hate canned carrots? Or, what if you don’t necessarily hate them, you just have just WAY too many canned carrots to get through
Easy. Donate them to your local food bank and take the tax write-off. Hell of a lot better than throwing them away.
4. Utility Company Incentives
So, you already know that there’s a federal tax credit (ITC) for solar PV panels. But have you checked rebates and incentives offered by your local utility companies?
Your city power company may offer a rebate for planting shade trees. They may provide free low-energy light fixtures and free home energy-usage evaluations.
Your city water company may offer rebates for re-landscaping a yard into a low-water landscape or discounts for purchasing rainwater-catching barrels.
Be sure to look into all available tax incentives and use these to stretch your dollars further.
5. Gun Trusts
In the event your SHTF plan involves some of the more high-powered hardware out there (automatic weapons), you will most likely want to hold them in a “gun trust.” Gun trusts provide for a smooth and orderly transfer of the firearm upon death. Note, a background check is still required.
Recognize, however, that this will defeat some level of your OpSec, as ATF will become well aware of your firepower. You can still use the methods described above to conceal your ownership of land and other property.
Use the Legal System to Your Advantage
As constraining as we may find the legal system to be, we can work it in our favor. Educate yourself on the most relevant laws and regulations. Preppers with strong knowledge of the legal system will be far more prepared than those who don’t. Don’t put yourself in a vulnerable position. Learn about the legal system ASAP.
Do you have any other suggestions about how to take advantage of the legal system? Leave a comment for Ryan below or contact us directly.
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