Funding Your Trust
Our Attorney Can Help You Fund Your Trust
“Funding” is the process of titling your property into the name of the Trust. The goal of establishing the Trust is so that it (and not you) becomes the owner of most of your property. The terms of the trust do not apply to that which the trust does not own.
Schedule “A” to your Trust and your General Grant and Assignment will specifically assign to your Trust all of your right, title, and interest in any and all of your property — but it is no substitute to the process of actually funding the Trust.
How to Fund Your Trust
Funding the Trust involves conveying title of your assets, one by one, into your Trust. For example, your financial assets (including investment and brokerage accounts, money market accounts, CDs, mutual funds, etc.), your checking and savings accounts, and shares of stock (either physical certificates or stock held in book-entry) should be retitled into the Trust.
Your real properties situated anywhere in the United States should be conveyed in the Trust by recording deeds with each county recorder’s office where the property is located (this avoids Probate administration in multiple States, because real estate is always subject to Probate in the state where it is located, unless it is owned in Trust).
Your life insurance policies where you are the insured should be updated to designate your Trust as the “pay-on-death Beneficiary” of the policy so that the successor Trustee will be able to collect the death benefit and “pool” it into your Trust, where it will be shielded from the Trust Beneficiaries’ creditors.
Your business entity interests (LLCs, Corps, PCs, etc.) should be assigned to the Trust by separate business Assignments, etc.
What Happens when a Trust Is Not Properly Funded?
If the Trust is not properly funded, and assets remain in a decedent’s individual name after death, they could be subject to Probate even when he/she had set up a Trust. An invaluable tool to circumvent full-blown Probate is having a Pour Over Will, which names the Trust as the sole Beneficiary of the decedent’s Probate Estate. The Will Executor can petition the court for an order transferring such assets back into the Trust without the formality of Probate. This type of petition is generally known as a Heggstad Petition.
Our Office has successfully won a number of Heggstad Petitions and has saved clients the significant expense and delay of having to go through formal Probate.
Contact the Law Offices of Maria N. Jonsson, PC for a Consultation and to learn more about what it takes to present a winning Heggstad Petition to the Court and avoid Probate.
The process of funding your Trust can be lengthy and complex. It is a crucial step that should be carried out correctly to avoid the highest price — Probate. To learn more about funding your Trust, reach out to our lawyer. Attorney Maria Jonsson serves Marina del Rey, Venice, and the surrounding areas.
Please call (310) 935-0706 today to schedule a consultation.
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