What Does It Mean to Have A Trust Established?

A trust is an estate planning device that many families use to protect their assets, prepare for incapacity, and protect their loved ones. Establishing a trust means you are creating a separate entity apart from yourself.

If you create a trust entity and intend for the trust to actually own the property, there are several important steps that you need to follow up with after you have created the trust.

A trust is not a one and done type of estate planning strategy and in order for it to be effective and to accomplish the goals that you set out, you will need to verify that the trust actually owns the property by having the property retitled into it, and funded close to the time that the trust is created in order to be recognized as valid within your estate. In addition, this is not the end of the work when it comes to your estate planning trust.

You’ll need to revisit your assets every year and verify that everything that is meant to be moved inside the trust has truly been transferred inside the trust. Keep this information updated so that if something happens to you, your loved ones or intended beneficiaries are able to take advantage of this. Your trust is only valid and accomplishes your goals if you fund the property into the trust by retitling it. Funding a trust can have some quirks to look out for. Especially when it applies to retirement accounts. Thus, it is important to consult with your Michigan estate planning attorney to ensure your trust has been set up properly.

If you remain as the trustee of a living trust, you can do things like mortgage the property or sell it just as you would as an owner. By having a living trust, if you were to become incapacitated or pass away, a successor trustee will be responsible for continuing to run the trust to ensure that the property is properly transferred to any beneficiaries that you have specified.

Set up a meeting with your estate planning lawyer to discuss your next steps and options. Our Michigan law office is here to help you with all your needs in terms of asset protection plan so that you have a customized plan for your needs.


Gregory S. Schrot
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