Planning for death can be an overwhelming process that many people would rather not think about. While this is true, creating an extensive estate plan is one of the most important things a person can do for themselves while they are still alive. Doing so allows you to be in control of what happens to your assets after you pass away. When creating an estate plan, you may wish to set up a trust to manage your assets. When you create a trust, you are known as the “trustor.” A person who benefits from the trust is known as the “beneficiary.” There is a third party who controls the trust, known as the “trustee.” A trust allows the trustee to take care of and manage a trustor’s assets on behalf of the beneficiary. There are several ways a trust may be created in the state of Pennsylvania.
Benefits of a Trust
Creating a trust is different from other estate options. When creating an estate, a trustor should look to find the most convenient situation for their beneficiaries. Setting up a trust may be a good way to do so. Trusts avoid probate, which is a process of approval that a will has to go through. Avoiding this makes it possible for a beneficiary to gain access to a trustor’s assets much faster. This process can also save the beneficiary from certain legal fees and taxes that other estate options cannot. When an individual creates a trust, they are able to manage their assets and ensure they end up where and with whom they wish them to be.
Irrevocable vs. Revocable Trusts
When creating a trust, there are two main types. Which type of trust an individual chooses to set up may depend on certain factors relating to their personal situation. A trustor’s decision may change depending on what they are looking to leave behind as well as the amount of control they wish to have over the trust while they are still alive. The two main types of trusts are:
- Revocable Trust: May be updated or terminated at any time without permission from the beneficiary.
- Irrevocable Trust: Requires the trustor to give up their rights to the trust. This means they cannot change the trust without the permission of the beneficiary.
Other Types of Trusts
There are many options as to what type of trust a person can create. Every trust suits a different situation. It is important to have legal counsel guide you to ensure you are setting up the trust that is best for you. The type of trust an individual creates may depend on who the beneficiary is and what it is they are being left. Other common trusts may include:
- Asset protection trusts
- Life insurance trusts
- Testamentary trusts
- Charitable remainder trusts
- Charitable leads trusts
- Inter vivos trusts
- Supplemental needs trusts
- Special Needs Trusts
- Generation-skipping trusts
- Qualified personal residence trusts
Contact our Firm
If you wish to create an estate plan and are seeking a legal representative to guide you through the process, contact the Law Offices of Mattleman, Weinroth & Miller, P.C. today.