Arlington Trusts Lawyer

Creating a trust can help you reach your financial goals during your lifetime and allow you to leave a legacy for your family after your death. Trusts can serve many purposes and are not just for extraordinarily wealthy individuals.

Trusts are frequently used for estate planning purposes. If you want to establish a create a plan to help you reach your financial goals for yourself or your loved ones, contact an Arlington trust lawyer today. A well-versed trusts and estates lawyer can help you create a plan that reflects your needs.

Trusts in Estate Planning

Establishing a trust creates a separate legal entity that can own or hold property in its own name. The grantor who creates the trust will decide its purpose as well as its terms. The initial grantor decides which beneficiaries will receive assets from the trust and the terms of their distributions.

The grantor can transfer some assets, like their personal property, to their trust immediately after the documents are signed. Other assets like real estate or vehicles will need to be transferred to the trust legally. Even if the grantor lists the asset as part of the trust, they must still legally transfer title to the property to the trust to be effective. For example, real estate must be deeded into the name of the trust to effectuate a transfer of the property into the governance of the trust terms.

Revocable and Irrevocable Trusts

The grantor can create a trust that is revocable or irrevocable. Revocable trusts, also known as living trusts, allow the grantor to maintain control of their assets while they are alive. In a living trust, the assets do generally not transfer to the beneficiaries until after the grantor’s death. During the grantor’s life, the grantor can change the beneficiaries or the trustee or can add or remove assets to the trust.

When the grantor of a revocable trust dies, the assets in the trust can transfer to the beneficiaries without having to go through probate. Probate is the process of administering an estate or a will and can often take months to complete. Beneficiaries of the estate may need to obtain attorneys to represent their interests in any probate litigation. By transferring property through a trust, the grantor can save their loved ones’ time and money.

An irrevocable trust does not allow the grantor to retain the power to alter or change it. A grantor might choose this type of trust to protect the trust assets from their creditors or their beneficiaries’ creditors. In most cases, regular creditors cannot reach assets held in an irrevocable trust. In addition, creating an irrevocable trust may help reduce the taxable value of an estate for federal estate tax purposes.

Other Options

A trust may encompass the majority of the grantor’s estate, or it could contain only a portion. Grantors can choose to create several trusts for multiple purposes. For example, a grantor could create a trust to provide for the care of their pet after their death. Or, the grantor could establish a trust for a charitable purpose.

Trusts may also be used to provide support for a minor child or disabled person. Parents who act as caretakers for their children with disabilities often use special needs trusts to ensure that their children will be cared for after they pass away.

A trust may also be established as part of a person’s will. Testamentary trusts do not take effect during the grantor’s lifetime and are only active after death. Because they are created as part of a will, these types of trusts are subject to a probate judge’s oversight.

Let an Arlington Trusts Attorney Assist You

Creating a trust can be an important part of managing your assets both now and in the future. If you are ready to plan your estate and think that a trust may be right for you, schedule an appointment with an Arlington trust lawyer today and learn more about your options.