Houston Trust Attorney
Like a last will and testament, a trust is a tool you can use to manage the distribution of your assets.
Indeed, wills and trusts often work side-by-side in an estate plan.
Compared to a will, however, trusts offer additional control over how you manage your assets, both while you’re living and after you’re gone.
What is a Trust?
A trust allows you to appoint a trustee to hold assets for the benefit of someone else, called the beneficiary. In the trustee-beneficiary relationship, the trustee must act as a fiduciary to the beneficiary. That is, the trustee has a fiduciary duty to manage the trust in the best interest of the beneficiary. If the trustee breaches this duty, they can be held liable.
Our family law attorneys can assist you with creating of a Trust that meets your needs and protects your beneficiaries.
How Does a Trust Work?
In short, a Trust gives you control of how and when your estate is distributed. The trustee holds legal title to and is responsible for managing the trust; however, the beneficiary has the legal right to use and enjoy the property within the trust.
Depending on the kind of trust formed, the grantor—the person who established the trust—may impose restrictions on how or when the beneficiary can access the assets within the trust.
One popular use for trusts is controlling a minor child’s access to money or property before a certain age. For example, suppose a grantor wants to make sure their children will only have access to the assets when they are mature enough to handle them properly.
The grantor can do so by establishing a trust that will become accessible to their children only when they turn 25.
When you work with a Houston Trust lawyer, we will work to help you form a trust to effectively manage your assets the way you want to. If you want to achieve your goals for your property and assets through Texas estate planning, call our law firm today at (713) 221-9088.
Types of Trusts in Texas
There are many types of trusts, each suited for a specific purpose. Some common trust types are:
- Testamentary trusts,
- Living trusts,
- Revocable and irrevocable trusts,
- Spendthrift trusts,
- Charitable trusts,
- Totten trusts, and
- Crummey trusts.
A revocable trust is perhaps the most common type of trust. Revocable trusts allow the grantor to retain control of their assets, including making modifications to the trust throughout the grantor’s life. This can be useful, especially because circumstances change.
Additionally, when a grantor with a revocable living trust dies, they can use a pour-over will to “pour over” their remaining assets into the trust. If you’re interested in forming a trust, contact us at The Larson Law Office for the best trust attorney Houston has to offer. We will work with you to set up the best kind of trust for your situation.
Benefits of Establishing a Trust
A carefully planned Trust can provide several benefits for you and your beneficiaries. A Trust can help you provide for your children until they reach a certain age of your choosing when you believe they will be mature enough to handle the assets or property you provide for them appropriately.
Protect Your Assets
Without a Trust, your children can inherit your estate at the age of 18. If your estate has a substantial value to it, you may not want your child to have access to the entirety of the estate the moment he or she turns 18.
Many of us were not ready to make significant financial decisions at 18 and a Trust is a good way for you ensure that the estate will not be wasted away before your child’s 21st birthday.
Many people think that only the elderly or the wealthy need or can benefit from Trusts. Neither of these assumptions is true. Many people of modest means who have children and good jobs utilize Trusts to control the access to and distribution of their property and to protect their families.
Protect Your Privacy
A trust allows you to protect your privacy and avoid lengthy probate proceedings. When someone dies, whether with or without a will, the court will divide their estate through the probate process. During this time, creditors and other family members may contest the will.
As a result, the proceedings are often expensive and time-consuming. A Trust avoids probate proceedings altogether, saving you time and money.
Additionally, probate court proceedings are public, meaning anyone can view the records and documents filed during probate. A Trust allows you to maintain your privacy by keeping proceedings out of probate court. A trust lawyer in Houston can advise you on other ways a trust or a will can protect your estate.