A trust is an important estate planning tool that California residents may use to protect their assets and wealth and preserve them for the benefit of their loved ones once the estate planner has passed on. However, there are many different kinds of trusts that individuals may establish. Different trust formats can accomplish different estate planning goals and may serve the diverse needs of California residents.
For example, previous posts here have discussed the differences that exist between revocable and irrevocable trusts. While a revocable trust may be changed or canceled by the person who makes it, an irrevocable trust cannot be undone once it is created. Estate planners may want to discuss how these important tools could help them meet their end-of-life financial goals.
Trusts can also be established for the benefit of charities. When a person includes a charitable trust in their estate plan, they are effectively granting to a charity certain property from their end-of-life estate. The trust maker can still receive proceeds from the trust, but at the time of their death the charitable trust property will pass directly to the charity.
Finally, estate planners can set up special needs trusts to help support loved ones who cannot provide for themselves. These trusts need to meet specific guidelines so that their existence does not prevent the beneficiaries from losing their rights to seek and receive certain government-supported benefits and should be set up with the help of estate planning attorneys.
This list is not complete and our readers who have specific questions about trusts may benefit from getting more information from estate planning attorneys. A trust can be a valuable tool to manage an estate after death, but different formats can be used to accomplish different goals and purposes.