Incorporating Nonfungible Tokens Into a Trust-Based Estate Plan

Trusts have a variety of uses. However, most Californians establish trusts to ensure that their families are not subjected to the rigors of probate—the process of formally dissolving and distributing an estate. Since trusts are legal entities rather than living persons, the assets held or managed by a trust are not customarily subjected to probate.

While you cannot retitle nonfungible tokens to a revocable living trust, you could still incorporate them into a trust-based estate plan. For example, your trust documents could include specific instructions allowing your successor trustee the authority to access your digital assets after your death.   

Once your successor trustee gains possession of the nonfungible tokens, they can manage your digital assets in accordance with your last wishes.

The Importance of Regularly Revising Your Estate Plan

Even if you already have a California estate plan, the Golden State’s probate code is constantly changing. In the past several years, the state legislature has made significant progress in recognizing the prevalence of digital assets in everyday life.

Since California’s laws can change quickly and with little notice, your estate plan may need to be revised to account for recent developments. Absent any adjustments, an outdated estate plan could jeopardize your legacy, leaving prized digital assets without any protection.


Philip J. Kavesh
Nationally recognized attorney helping clients with customized estate planning guidance for over 40 years.