Living Revocable Trusts
Grand Junction Estate Planning Lawyer
A Living Revocable Trust (LRT) is a written agreement whereby one person (or entity) holds property in trust for the benefit of another. The person who establishes the Trust is known as the Settlor or Grantor and the person (or entity) that manages or holds the property is known as the Trustee. Living Revocable Trusts are an important element of the Estate Planning process for those with large estates; those who want to avoid Probate ; and those who wish to place restrictions on how and when their heirs receive the inheritance.
The Trustee has a legal obligation (a fiduciary duty) to manage the property with care and prudence for the benefit of the beneficiary. Typically, the Grantor is both Trustee and beneficiary and he may modify the Trust and dispose of Trust property as he wishes. However, upon the Grantor's death the Trust becomes irrevocable and is managed by a Successor Trustee. The Successor Trustee's job is similar to that of a Personal Representative in that both are responsible for paying the Grantor's creditors, taxes and distributing assets to the beneficiaries. The positions differ in that the Trustee is not appointed by the Probate Court.
A Living Revocable Trust:
- Can be amended or revoked by the Grantor whenever he chooses
- Does not require the filing of a separate income tax return
- Allows the Grantor to use or dispose of the Trust assets during his lifetime without any restrictions
- Is established during the Grantor's lifetime for the benefit of the Grantor and his or her spouse
- A Living Revocable Trust affords a number of benefits, including:
- Maintaining family privacy
- Providing flexibility - the Grantor can impose conditions and restrictions on the heirs' ability to receive and use Trust funds
- The doubling of the federal estate tax exemption for married couples
- Preserving the inheritance of spendthrift beneficiaries
- Eliminating the need to Probate the Grantor's estate
A Word About Funding Your Trust
Once you have executed your Living Trust, it is imperative that the Trust be funded so that your estate will not be subject to probate.
Estate Planning Attorney in Grand Junction
Since 1993 the Law Offices of James A. Littlepage , a Grand Junction Estate Planning firm, has been helping families with large estates to minimize their federal estate tax liability utilizing Living Revocable Trusts. Mr. Littlepage has prepared over 2,000 estate plans and recently was recognized with a 2015 and 2016 Five Star Estate Planning Attorney℠ award. In 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011 and 2010 he received the Five Star Wealth Manager℠ award, as seen in 5280 and ColoradoBiz magazines. For assistance in protecting your estate from federal estate taxes, please contact our Grand Junction office.
Contact a Grand Junction Estate Planning Lawyer at the firm to discuss Living Revocable Trusts.