A trust is a valid contract wherein one party, recognized as a trustor, gives this other party, the trustee, the authority to keep ownership of the property or resources for the benefit of the shareholders, the recipient. Trusts are formed to provide protection for the recipient assets, to ensure those assets are granted as per the trustor’s wishes and save time, decrease paperwork.
Trusts are established by settlers, more than likely, the persons with their attorneys, who decide how to transfer part or all of their assets to the trustees. These trustees keep the property of the beneficiaries of the trust in custody. The rules of the trust are subject to the conditions under which it was established. In some areas, older beneficiaries are more likely to become trustees.
Trusts can determine how someone’s money can or should be managed and shared during their lifetime or after their death. A trust helps to avoid taxes and estates. It can protect property from creditors and set inheritance conditions for beneficiaries. The disadvantage of trusts is that they take time and money to create and they cannot be easily canceled. Trust is a way of providing for a beneficiary who is a minor or has an intellectual disability that may affect their ability to manage their finances. Once the beneficiary is deemed capable of managing their assets, they take possession of the trust.
Different trust categories
- Testamentary trust
A living trust is a written document in which a person’s assets are made available as a trust during their lifetime. These are now the transferred beneficiaries’ assets at the time of the death of the individual. The person’s successor is the trustee who is responsible for the transfer of assets.
- Irrevocable or revocable
The trustor can amend or cancel an enforceable trust during his or her lifetime. Because as the name indicates, an irreversible trust is something that the trustor cannot amend after it is made or one which becomes irreversible upon his demise.
Living Trusts may be undoable or irrevocable. The testamentary trust is irrevocable. Irreversible trust is usually preferable. The fact that it contains assets and is unchangeable has been permanently omitted from the trustee’s ownership minimizes or may avoid inheritance tax.
- Is it financed or unfunded?
The trustor’s assets are placed in a funded trust during his lifetime. An unfilled trust is one that merely has the trust agreement and no funds. Unfunded trusts can either become funded or stay underfunded upon the death of the trustor. Because an unfilled trust would expose resources to many of the risks that a trust is intended to prevent, adequate financing is critical.
The general purpose of trusts
A trust fund is an ancient tool, dating back to feudal times, in fact, it is often met with condemnation for being associated with the passive wealthy (such as the “trust fund boy” with a view). But trusts are extremely versatile vehicles that can protect assets and direct them to the right hand long after the death of the original owner of the asset, present, and future. A trust is a legal entity used to maintain the property, so the property is often more secure than that of a family member. Even well-meaning family members can face lawsuits, divorces, or other misfortunes, putting property at risk.