Hello there, my name is Andrew Cobin, I'm a board-certified specialist in estate planning and probate law, and I want to talk today about living trusts. But before we get to that, let's talk about what a trust is. A trust is just a contract. Depending on the terms of the contract, it produces different results and depending on those results, attorneys give the trust different names. Now, the most common type of trust we have out there is a trust called the revocable living trust. Now, some attorneys call it just a living trust. Others might call it a revocable trust agreement but no matter what the name is, what's significant about the living trust is that we have three distinct characteristics.
So, Characteristic number one, the trust is revocable and amendable during your lifetime. So, you create the trust and as the trust creator, you have the ability to make changes to the trust and to do away with the trust entirely if you want to. Second important aspect is that you can move your assets, your property, etc in and out of the trust, so you can freely retitle assets into the trust. Assets that are in the trust, you can retitle them out of the trust so you retain complete control of the title of your assets. The third thing that is remarkable about this is that because you hold the power to revoke the trust and amend the trust. And because you can move your property in and out of the trust, the treasury regulations direct that you are not taxed any differently, so would continue to file you 1040 the same way you always have. You would continue to keep the social security number associated with a bank account or a brokerage account etc that may be titled in the trust, you would keep that all the same. The creator of the Trust is the Trustee.
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