Relinquishing To Preserve

Author:Ms Carolyn Oh
Profession:Labuan IBFC Inc

Carolyn Oh, the principal of Carolyn Oh and Co, discusses the importance of control in wealth preservation and how it can be achieved via Labuan Trust and Foundation.

"It's ok to have your eggs in one basket as long as you control what happens to that basket" - Elon Musk

The word to note is 'control'. If one has exercised control for most parts of one's life when it comes to succession planning that need to control would still be very much prevalent in the system. However, as much as 'control' is an innate characteristic in any successful person, a penchant to 'preserve' is another usual trait which in this context mirrors thriftiness and an instinctive need to plan ahead, be it for:

Business Succession: to relinquish to test and hone successor(s) for thebusinesses Legacy Planning: to relinquish to one's chosen beneficiaries or to consider what kindof legacy to leave behind Wealth Preservation: to relinquish assets but in a controlled fashion The point I am intent on making is that for whatever reasons, to preserve would inevitably involve giving up i.e. relinquishing. In the inverse, imagine if one dropped the basket!


The reasons to preserve differ from people to people and differ at different times of our lives.

We preserve:

at the start, to save for oneself (rainy day monies) to save for our family to save for business capital to retire because of unforeseen circumstances because there is too much for one's own lifetime for the sake of one's legacy To move on to preserve and to structure requires one to start thinking of candidate(s) whom one can rely on.

Whom 'TO' rely upon

The process of structuring for preservation automatically leads one to think of one's own mortality and when we are not around or unable for whatever reasons―who can we rely on to help us preserve.

Needless to say choosing who can be entrusted should be a deliberated choice as the candidate(s) could either take the family or the business or the family business to a greater height but in the inverse wrong candidate(s) could also be the downfall of it all.

If the focus is on family-owned businesses then the children of the patriarch or matriarch concerned are the usual suspects as candidates-to-succeed.

On this note, the relationship complexities of 'Grandfather to Father to Son', i.e. the 3 Generation Gap Issue which is a topic that can be elaborated to no end and possibly to no certain solution. For now, we are dealing with that complex word 'relationship'. However, a good place to start would be acknowledging from the onset that the 3 Generation will have different point(s) of views.

The next step would be to encourage inter-generational sharing, tolerance, open-mindedness and willingness to try and accept hence the shelving of one's critical and cynical nature. The younger set should also not view the 'older' as being old-fashioned but rather classic and vintage hence parties to learn from. On the other hand, the older ones should see the 'younger' as current and possibly having a modern way forward for the family...

To continue reading