Imagine that you're a California grandparent who dotes mightily on the grandkids. As clear evidence of your love, you have been steadily funding college saving plans for them, which have reaped gains over the years owing to their qualified status that protects them from taxation.
Here's a central reality regarding trust administration in California and across the United States: Individuals who establish trust vehicles (such persons are often termed trustors or settlers) as planning tools intended to benefit others often appoint trust administrators without sufficiently considering their estate-related acumen and ability to properly manage the trust.
In the world of trusts, trustees have duties and beneficiaries have rights.
Revocable living trusts aren’t for everyone, but they are an important part of most high-quality estate plans. Here are the main reasons revocable living trusts (RLTs) are used, according to a recent article from Entrepreneur:
From raising money to help feed hungry children to funding cancer research, many Americans have a certain cause in which they believe and want to support both during their life and after they pass. For these individuals, a charitable remainder trust provides important benefits and tax incentives that help to not only benefit a specific charity and cause, but can also provide a future income stream for oneself, a spouse and surviving heirs.
It would be great if an estate plan were something you could just set and forget, but life rarely works that way. Many people take responsible action and develop an estate plan that will provide tax savings and protect their assets for their spouses and children. If they don't update those plans to reflect changes in life and the law, however, those careful plans may turn out to be ineffective.
As a trust beneficiary, you have rights, which may depend largely on the language of the trust document. The complexity and length of the document are, in many case, intimidating for the trust beneficiary. If you suspect that your rights as a beneficiary have been violated or ignored, then you may need a legal professional to read and interpret the document to determine exactly what your rights are and how they have been violated.
You've probably already heard about the benefits of a trust -- how it's much like a will except for the fact that your loved ones don't have to navigate the probate process when you pass away. You probably also know that a trust may potentially save your heirs a considerable amount of money in taxes.
In our previous post, we started discussing how even though the execution of a trust grants its creator certain advantages -- minimization of tax liability, control of asset distribution, privacy -- this final element of secrecy wasn't always guaranteed.
As we've discussed on our blog before, there are multiple reasons why a trust might prove to be the single most effective instrument to accomplish your estate planning objectives.