What Is a Trust?
A trust is a legal property interest held by one person for the benefit of another. The person who holds the legal property interest is called the trustee. The person for whom the property is being held is called the beneficiary. The person establishing the trust is called the grantor. A trust can be revocable or irrevocable. Revocable trusts may be changed or terminated by the grantor at any time and for any reason. An irrevocable trust, once established, cannot be terminated or altered by the grantor for any reason. A trust designed to go into effect upon your death is called a testamentary trust. However, experienced estate planning attorneys often use living trusts, created while you are still alive, as a way to avoid probate and its associated costs. Living trusts often morph into irrevocable trusts continue following your death. If the assets of the Revocable living trust are immediately distributed outright to the beneficiaries, the trust terminates
Trusts allow the trustee to direct or control the property that compress the trust assets. Trustees have a legal duty to make decisions regarding the trust property in the best interests of the beneficiary.
Benefits of a Trust?
As essential to many as a will or durable power of attorney, trusts are the Swiss Army Knife in any estate planning toolkit. In fact, there are simply too many different trusts used in estate planning to list in full. But all that really means in terms of our discussion here is that there is an even longer list of potential benefits.
Trusts are used with great flexibility for intergenerational wealth transfers, for minimizing federal estate taxes, for providing a consistent stream of income for your family and asset protection.
One of the best reasons for using revocable living trusts as part of your estate plan is privacy. No one has to know the details of what you do with your estate. A funded living trust can ensure that. Once established, our trust administration attorneys continue to work with you on managing the trust in the years ahead.
A Trust Can be Revocable or Irrevocable.
- Revocable trusts may be changed or terminated by the grantor at any time and for any reason. Upon your death this trust becomes a testamentary trust unless it is distributed outright to the beneficiaries by the grantor
- An irrevocable trust, once established, cannot be terminated or altered for any reason.
Experienced estate planning attorneys often use living trusts, created while you are still alive, as a way to avoid probate and its associated costs. To ensure your estates’ privacy and to better define how you want your estate handled Contact Our Chicago Trust Attorneys
Other estate planning tools we offer include:
- Power of Attorney for Health Care: Appoints and agent (a proxy) to make personal and medical decisions on your behalf, should you become incapacitated.
- Power of Attorney for Finances or Property – Appoints an agent (a proxy) to manage your finances, should you become incapacitated.
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