Types of Trusts

Why Should You Consider Hiring  A Trust Attorney

Cary, NC & Wake Forest, NC

If you would like to leave your possessions to your family, but do not want them to have to go through the probate process, you can create a trust for them, A trust attorney will help file all the necessary paperwork to set up a trust on your behalf, and can provide you and whoever you name as your trustee with legal assistance. If your estate is large or complex, you even have the option of naming your lawyer as your trustee. You can also go this route if you want to ensure that your trustee is an impartial third party.

What Does a Trusts Attorney Do?

Trusts are simply an arrangement where one party holds property on behalf of another party. Trust attorneys help you arrange and prepare your estate plan. In an estate planning context, trusts are created by the person doing the estate planning (the settlor), who authorizes another person (the trustee) to manage the assets for the benefit of a third party (the beneficiaries). There are many reasons for establishing trusts including tax minimization or providing for the needs of underage beneficiaries.

Some types of trusts that may be useful in estate planning are:

  • Revocable living trusts. Revocable living trusts are documents completely separate from wills although they often work hand in hand with wills to carry out the decedent’s wishes. Revocable living trusts are primarily used to avoid probate in states where probate is particularly cumbersome, or in a few other instances, such as when a person owns real estate in multiple states.
  • Marital trusts. Married couples sometimes include trusts in their wills, or separately, for the benefit of their spouse, typically for two reasons: (1) taxes, and (2) property protection. In previous years, marital trusts were needed for some couples to take advantage of estate tax exemptions, and they may be needed in the future as the laws are expected to change. Marital trusts can also protect property from a spouse to ensure that it ultimately goes where it needs to go. For example, a husband with grown children from a previous marriage may decide to let his wife use his property after he passes, but puts it into a trust so that after she passes away it goes to his children.
  • Trusts for minors. Many people leave money to their children or their grandchildren in a trust as part of a comprehensive estate plan. This is typically done to ensure the money is there for the children’s benefit while they are younger-for support, education, medical expenses, etc. Once the children reach a certain age or achievement level (such as obtaining a bachelor’s degree), they may receive money from the trust to do with as they please.
  • Special needs trusts. Special needs trusts are tools that enable a person to leave property to an individual with special needs. Many individuals with special needs receive government benefits. If they were to suddenly inherit money, they would be disqualified in most cases from those benefits until the inheritance was spent. Special needs trusts protect those individuals’ government benefits while allowing them to have money for any extras they may need.

Creating a trust ensures that your valuables go to the right place. By hiring a trust lawyer, you can feel confident that the decisions you make will be put into action even if there is a dispute.

What to Expect When You Meet With a Trusts Attorney for the First Time

While most people understand how important it is to have a comprehensive estate plan, few actually sit down and make arrangements. There are many reasons for this; in many situations, people are often simply unsure of what to expect. Taking some of the mystery out of your meeting with a trusts lawyer can help to make the process seem easier and encourage more people to reach out. 

When you visit a trusts attorney, you will accomplish the following:

  • Establish Your Primary Goals: This might seem like an obvious question, but a trusts attorney can provide some structure to the process. You can make provisions for your assets, children, pets, medical decisions, and other matters as part of a trust. Establishing who and what you want to protect can help the process seem much less overwhelming.
  • Identify Special Circumstances: No two situations are exactly the same, and in some circumstances you might have an unusual situation that will need to be addressed. This is where a trusts attorney can really help you; we can help arrange matters to your benefit so you can have peace of mind.
  • Determine Who Will Have Control: In the event that you are incapacitated, who will you trust to make medical and financial decisions for you? Establishing a trust to account for these situations can make things much easier if anything unexpected happens down the road.
  • Record Your Wishes: Nobody wants to talk about what might happen in the future, but most people have very clear wishes. Working with an experienced and compassionate trust attorney will ensure that your wishes are recorded so they can be met if and when the time comes. 

To get started with a trusts attorney, don't hesitate to reach out to our office to schedule a meeting. 

Contact Our Trusts Attorney to Learn More

Chambers & Ennis is a full-service trust and estate administration law firm serving those in the Raleigh, NC area including Wake Forest, NC; Cary, NC; Apex, NC; Holly Springs, NC and nearby areas. If you have any questions about living trusts, estate planning, estate taxes, or probate, do not hesitate to contact us.

Based in Raleigh, North Carolina we assist clients throughout Wake County, NC and Johnston County, NC as well as the cities of Cary, NC, Morrisville, NC, and Clayton, NC.

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