Mar 27, 2014
By Senior Advocate and Estate Planning Attorney Rick Law of Law Elder Law.
There are three distinct roles created by a trust document; the trustmaker, the trustee and the beneficiary. The trustmaker is the person who creates the trust, which is rulebook that controls the trust assets. The trustee is the person chosen to manage the assets of the trust according to the rulebook for the benefit of the beneficiary. In the most typical living trust, all three roles are filled by the same person or people. The trustmaker is also the trustee and the beneficiary (during life).
In most revocable living trusts, the trustmaker has total access to all of the assets held in the trust. Since the trustmaker controls the terms of the trust and has total access to all the assets, creditors of the trustmaker can reach the assets of the trust. Many people who having living trusts mistakenly believe that their trust will protect their assets by creating a creditor and nursing home cost fortress around their assets.
Revocable Living Trusts are not Asset Protection Trusts. Asset Protection Trusts are sophisticated trusts created by highly trained attorneys who concentrate their practice on helping clients who desire these valuable tools. Many of our clients have utilized customized asset protection trusts to avoid excessive impoverishment due to long-term care costs. An extensive knowledge of public benefit law is required to properly design and manage this type of trust planning.
Do you know what kind of trust you have? Call us for a free consultation at 630-585-5200 or 800-310-3100. We’ll let you know what steps you need to take, right now, to protect yourself and your family.
Rick L. Law, Attorney, Estate Planner for Retirees.
Rick was named the #1 Illinois elder law estate planning attorney for the past 3 years by Leading Lawyer Magazine. He has been quoted in the Wall Street Journal, AARP Magazine, TheStreet.com, and numerous newspapers and articles. Rick is the lead attorney for Law Elder Law, LLP, focusing in Estate Planning, Guardianship, and Nursing Home Solutions. His goal is to give retirees an informed edge when it comes to dealing with an uncertain future. Get flexible retirement strategies that work during good times and bad, plus information on how you can save your home and assets from being used to pay for long term care. Call 630-585-5200 or 800-310-3100 for your free consultation now!
My wife and I had our first child three years ago. That’s when we decided to set up a trust, should anything happen to either of us. We reached out to Zach Hesselbaum to help us out. He was very thorough and professional throughout the whole process. Zach went above and beyond to make sure that we understood every detail of setting it up and he did an excellent job. We recently had our second child a few months ago. With the new baby, he helped us make the necessary revisions to the trust. Zach made this process great for us! I would definitely recommend using him for any of your estate planning needs!
Tom G., Naperville, IL