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					There are three essential players in every Trust:
    The Grantor (Creator)
    The “do-er” (The Trustee who has duties to perform); and
    The Beneficiary (the one who receives benefits from the Trust)
Of course, there can be more than one grantor, trustee, or beneficiary
in any Trust
R EVOCABLE T RUSTS : A common estate planning tool is the
use of Revocable Trusts. At the beginning of most Revocable
Living Trusts, the Grantor (who creates the Trust) usually
plays all three roles -- Grantor, Trustee, and Beneficiary. When
the Grantor becomes incapacitated or dies, the Successor
Trustees take over for the Grantor. While the Grantor is still
alive, the Successor Trustee will continue to manage Grantor’s
financial affairs. At the Grantor’s death, the assets may be
                 TRUSTS
distributed to the residual beneficiary (perhaps Grantor’s
children) and the trust is then terminated. This is completed
without Court supervised probate.
It Isn't Chiseled in Stone
A Revocable Living Trust is referred to as "revocable" because,
as the name implies, it can be revoked in whole or in part
        Special Needs Trust
during the creator's ("Grantor's") life. Of course, the
beneficiaries can be changed during the Grantor's life,
although few Grantors make such changes. The term "living"
means the Trust was created during the life of the Grantor, as
          Irrevocable Trust
opposed to "at death," as happens with Trust provisions in a
Will, which is called a Testamentary Trust. While the Trust
does become irrevocable (unchangeable) at the death of the
Grantor, there are usually broad grants of power given to the
Successor Trustees (the ones who take over after the Grantor's
death) to make discretionary distributions to family members
for a variety of purposes.
Estate Tax Planning: Thoughtful writing of a Revocable Living Trusts may
provide estate tax relief for married couples and keep the family wealth in a
form (the Trust) that allows adult children (as Trustees) or a Trust company to
provide assistance for the surviving spouse. One of the key features of these
Trusts is the ability to obtain estate tax savings for married couples while, at
the same time, keeping the financial benefits of all of the family wealth
available to the surviving spouse (and children) for health, support,
maintenance, and education. This can be done without having everything
taxed again when the second spouse dies. To use an over-repeated phrase, the
use of Trusts in this manner is like "having your cake and eating it too."

				
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posted:10/24/2011
language:English
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