Trusts are Comfortable Ground for Attorney, Nina B. Stillman

In part, comfort is what forming a trust is all about. This is what I’ve learned in years of helping many clients understand and form trusts so they can take comfort in knowing how their assets and estate will be handled after they’re gone.

Trusts are varied and complex instruments and we can discuss the details in much greater depth if you contact us for a complimentary consult, which is always a good idea. I can help you determine whether you need a trust or just a will.  I can help you decide whether creating trusts for your children is a step you want or need to take.  I can also help you decide whether you will lessen the chance of paying estate tax and possibly lower your income tax exposure by creating one or more trusts.

Generally, you are the one (the grantor) who creates a trust. You’re the decider who works with me to write the rules on how the trust is to operate, what it’s supposed to do, and how and when the actions stated in the trust will be carried out. If the trust is revocable, you can change anything in the trust at any time. If you want it set in stone, we can create an irrevocable trust.

One of the requirements of a trust is the need to appoint a trustee who oversee all the duties designated in the trust regarding distribution and management of the assets. As you may know because you’ve seen a trustee in action, it’s a big responsibility and consumes a lot of time. I counsel my clients to choose carefully and cautiously and to discuss the responsibility with the person you have in mind.

Advantages of a Trust

  • Can cover assets that you own in more than one state
  • Can protect you in the event you become incapacitated
  • Can potentially reduce exposure to income tax and estate and gift taxes
  • You decide how and when your assets will be distributed after you die
  • You can avoid probate, which means you can distribute your assets without the cost, delay and publicity of probate court. For the financial record, probate can cost between 5% to 7% of your estate and is a public proceeding open to anyone who cares to look.
  • You can protect your assets from your heirs creditors and lawsuits
  • And, as discussed, you can appoint a trustee who will not only manage your trust after you die, but is legally able to control the trust assets if you become unable to do so.

Do you Need a Trust? Answer these Questions:

  • Do you worry about an heir receiving money before they are financially responsible? We’ve got a “Spendthrift Trust” for that
  • Do you have millions of dollars? – You should consider a “Family Trust”,  “Bypass Trust” , a “Life Insurance Trust” and “Separate trusts for Children or others.”
  • What about a family member who has a disability? The “Special Needs” Trust is a wonderful way to care for those who can’t care for themselves
  • Do you expect your spouse to remarry? If you have children, then you should talk to us about the “Qualified Terminable Interest Property (QTIP) Trust”
  • Want to leave money to a favorite charity? There is are several types of “Charitable Trusts” that may suit your needs and desires.

There are many other trusts that can serve you; just one question remains:

Looking for a trustworthy lawyer? Turn to Hecht Schondorf.

Call me at (312) 878-1209 or contact the firm below.

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