Estate planning, especially when handling larger estates, complex family situations, or unique assets, often involves setting up and funding various types of trusts. Utah law on trusts and estates has its own unique quirks that make it important to have an experienced estate attorney help you determine the best way to organize your assets in order to meet your goals. Knowing your loved ones will have the care they need and that important family assets are protected drive many of our clients towards a number of different types of trusts.
A revocable trust is created during your lifetime and trust documents can be changed or revoked while you’re still alive. You transfer property into the trust and have the ability to remove the property from the trust, but all property in the trust at death is not subject to probate. Instead, those assets belong to the trust and are subject to the terms of the trust, administered by the trustee for the benefit of all named beneficiaries.
The drawback of a revocable trust is that assets transferred during your lifetime are still available to creditors if they are able to get a court order stating that the assets in the revocable trust are still your assets. Generally, most revocable trusts state that revocable trusts become irrevocable upon the death of the trust maker.
Irrevocable trusts cannot be altered after their creation and property transferred into the trust cannot be removed from the trust, unless its terms allow. Property in an irrevocable trust can avoid creditors, but must also be managed by the trustee strictly for the named beneficiaries, not the trust maker.
Asset Protection Trust
Like irrevocable trusts, many trusts are designed to protect assets from creditor claims. The trust maker may be a beneficiary of the trust, but in order to provide the assets protection that is promised, the trust must comply with very specific statutes and rules..
Many individuals want to give a portion of their estates to charity and establish a charitable trust to facilitate this goal. Setting up a trust allows the assets to avoid or reduce taxes and creditors while still providing the trust maker with benefits during their lifetime. The charity then becomes the beneficiary on the trust maker’s death.
Special Needs Trust
When planning for a child with special needs, setting up a special needs trust can help them continue to receive financial support while not disqualifying them from receiving needed government benefits. Since receiving an inheritance can reduce an individual’s eligibility for health and support benefits, the Social Security rules allow disable beneficiaries who cannot control trust distributions to receive support from both the government and a trust set up to provide additional support, as long as the trust is set up in a way that complies with the rules of the governmental entity providing benefits.
The experienced trust and estates planning team from Dunn Law Firm will take the time to learn about your specific personal goals, your current asset structure, and any other unique aspects of your current estate. We then help you craft an estate including trusts, wills, and medical documents that is unique to you. To learn more, reach out to the Dunn Law Firm by calling (435) 628-5405 to set up a free consultation today.