Trusts are one of the more complex legal and financial vehicles. A trust allows you to transfer and use assets in numerous ways. You should always have counsel whenever dealing with a trust. Contact a trust attorney if you need help with or have questions about these four issues.
Creating a Trust
Unsurprisingly, a lawyer can help you create a trust. This includes figuring out the best way to organize it. For example, someone establishing a trust as part of their estate might use a testamentary trust. This kind of trust only comes into existence upon a person's passing. It is useful if you wish to enjoy certain assets while you're alive but also want to pass them along to beneficiaries.
People use trusts for many reasons. For example, many doctors set up trusts to insulate their assets from potential malpractice lawsuits. If you have a relative who requires long-term care, you might establish a trust to guarantee that money will be there to pay the expenses. People also establish trusts to fund charities and other causes.
Suppose someone has asked you to serve as a trustee. Legally speaking, it's a big deal. A trustee has a fiduciary duty to protect the financial interests of the beneficiaries. That means the beneficiaries can seek damages if the trustee violates that duty, even through a simple mistake.
A trust attorney can help administrators to protect their rights while serving in such important roles. Likewise, a lawyer can assist a trustee with drawing up documents, interpreting the terms of the trust, and handling funds.
Like all legal vehicles, trusts can outlive their usefulness. You can establish the terms for the termination of a trust if you grant it. However, beneficiaries and administrators need a judge's permission to terminate a trust. A trust attorney can help you produce the paperwork and organize the necessary evidence to support a petition for termination.
A trust may also last long enough to require modifications. If the person who granted the trust is still alive, they need to make sure the modifications don't create confusion. A trust lawyer can draw up new documents in a way that ensures older terms will no longer apply.
Modifications are much harder for beneficiaries and administrators. Changing a trust is still possible. However, some beneficiaries may disagree. Also, an administrator might object. Such conflicts may lead to litigation, and you'll want a trust attorney during any lawsuit.Share