Funding Your Trust – What Is It And How To Do It?
Simple life decisions such as ordering food and choosing an outfit for an event are one and done decisions. You make the purchase and then consume the product in whatever capacity. You don’t necessarily have to go back and make changes/additions to keep it relevant and useful.
However, serious decisions are often not quite so. And what could be more serious than planning for when you’re not here to look after your family and loved ones? Despite being a grim topic, estate planning in the Bronx needs to be considered as a priority.
Many people sit down with an estate planning lawyer in the Bronx and determine a trust to be the solution for them.
When you compare trusts to other options offered by estate planning in the Bronx, the prior comes out on top. Cost savings, efficiency, and the element of added control all seem more lucrative than a will.
Furthermore, it avoids a public probate process. It also saves taxes, makes inheritance planning easier, and considers possible incapacity.
However, when you do get around to it and sit an estate planning lawyer in the Bronx, you’ll realize that signing a living trust is it for estate planning. A proper-functioning trust goes beyond that.
Once you’ve signed the papers, you have to fund assets into the trust.
What does it mean?
Very simply put, funding a trust is the transfer of assets such as real estate into a trust. Typically, assets are under your individual title or in joint names if you are bound in holy matrimony.
When you fund a trust, you change the initial titles to the trust’s name. For beneficiary-requiring assets, it involves changing the designation to the trust.
Who is involved?
Whoever you name as trustee will be responsible for funding the trust. In most cases, you are likely to remain as the trustee. This means you’ll have control of the assets. You can continue to buy, sell, and re-title assets from the trust as long as you are able to.
If you are negligent as a trustee and don’t fund assets into the trust, it has to go through the probate process. As mentioned previously, this could be time-consuming and expensive and especially harder when your loved ones are grieving.
The main goal of estate planning in the Bronx is to avoid being probated as much as possible. Being proactive about funding your trust is a part of this effort.
How does the process work?
The process of trust funding looks different for everyone. An estate planning lawyer in the Bronx will be able to provide better guidance.
Generally, the process involves you signing a deed, changing ownership or re-titling assets. The following should provide a better look into how different types of assets are funded into a trust.
Real Estate Transfers
Depending on the state of your residence, the requirements for the transfer of real estate change. Usually, a deed is required, which needs to be executed as per the law of the State it is located in.
Titled and Untitled Personal Possessions
Personal property is anything not considered as real estate. For example, cars, trucks, bonds, shares, interest in stock, and other types are considered titled property because they require legal title documents. On the other hand, jewelry, books, collectibles, and furniture, etc. are untitled.
Both can be funded into a trust. For titles assets, you need to show a new title showing the trust as owner. You may also name the trust as beneficiary. For untitled possession, you have to transfer property with a signed and dated assignment of ownership.
Adding a Bank Account
An estate planning lawyer in the Bronx or a bank will inform you how to transfer a baking account into a fund. There are different ways to go about this but it changes from case to case. You can do it with a Certificate of Deposit or you can open a new account under the name of the trust.
Consult your bank or lawyer for guidance.
Placing Life Insurance
Putting life insurance in a trust depends on which state you reside in. Federal and state estate taxes have an impact on the control a trustee has on the policy’s benefits and proceeds.
Besides funding the assets with policies or designating the trust as beneficiary, you set up a life insurance trust.
Trademarks and Copyrights
Things can get a little complicated with trademarks, copyrights, and royalties. Please talk to an estate planning lawyer in the Bronx and the following offices for better guidance:
- The U.S. Copyright Office
- The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
Unfunded trusts = stack of papers
The worth of a trust is much more when it is properly documented. It’s crucial to take out time to title your assets and put them under the trust’s name.
If you neglect to do so, what’s the point of going through the process of estate planning in the Bronx? It will only result in more work and stress for your loved ones when all you want is their peace of mind and protection.