It is important to note that a trust can be created to be revocable or irrevocable. Revocable trusts, also known as “inter vivos” or “living” trusts, are established while the creator of the trust is still alive. These trusts can be altered or eliminated by the creator at any time. At the time of the grantor’s death, the trust becomes irrevocable. Trusts that were created as irrevocable trusts may not be modified without consent of all beneficiaries.
There are many types of trusts you can create to protect your assets and beneficiaries during life as well as after your death. Most are created as revocable trusts before the grantor’s death, including:
- Special needs trusts. This type of trust is created on behalf of an individual who receives government benefits for a disability or special need, such as supplemental security income and healthcare. Special needs trusts are also popular for parents of special needs children who want to ensure that their children will be taken care of after their death.
- Asset protection trust. These trusts are frequently formed in countries other than the United States, but the assets do not always need to be transferred. The goal of an asset protection trust is to protect assets from creditor assault.
- Charitable trust. Charitable trusts benefit a specific charity or may even benefit the public. Charitable trusts are often created as part of an estate plan to avoid or reduce estate and gift taxes for the parties who benefit from the estate’s assets.
- Constructive trusts. This type of trust is used to transfer property rights when an individual cannot legally convey the title.
While these are some of the common types of trusts used in California, another type of trust may be more suitable for your estate. Therefore, it is important to consult with a trust attorney to understand the trust options available to you as you navigate the estate planning process.
One of the most important responsibilities of a Tustin trust attorney is to help you determine what will happen to your estate after your death. The process of estate planning may involve several legal documents. To decide what to include in your estate plan, you must first consider your goals for estate distribution. Important considerations may include:
- What assets will I have in my estate?
- How do I want assets to be managed and distributed when I pass away?
- Who should care for my minor children or other dependents?
- What are my wishes for funeral arrangements or burial?
- Do I have specific instructions regarding my medical treatment?
You may also want to consider:
- The overall cost of your final wishes and how it will affect those receiving assets upon your death
- Life insurance, which can help protect your family from financial hardship in the event of your death
- Gifting plans or trusts, which can help reduce taxes owed on certain assets during life and after death
- Working with a Tustin trust attorney to ensure your wishes are communicated in a comprehensive, legally valid manner