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Living Trust Questions

A living trust is considered a legal process of creating an individual’s assets within a Trust during his/her lifetime, normally during the time of estate planning. These assets and properties are normally owned and ran by the Trust for the beneficiary. The trustee or beneficiary is normally the maker of the Trust. Read below where Experts have answered many questions relating to a living trust.

If three people are party to an irrevocable Living Trust with one of them being the Trustee and none of them do anything other than paying the taxes for a period of nine years, will the Trust become void? Also, can the Trustee sell the property without the consent of the others?

The Trust will exist as is irrespective of the fact that the Trustee, or others joined in the Trust, has done nothing other than paying taxes. The Trustee may sell the property only if he/she is vested with the authority to do so by the Trust.

If you wish to restrain the Trustee from selling the property, you may file a suit to have the Trustee removed for breach of fiduciary duties due to incompetence since he/she has not done anything for a period of nine years other than pay taxes. The court may appoint a successor Trustee. However, this Trustee too may have the right to sell the property if Living Trust says so.

While my spouse’s retirement documents give me spousal benefits, it has not been entered into the Living Trust. Since my spouse has lost savings and property, how can the Living Trust be annulled and how much will this cost?

Revoking a Living Trust is a simple procedure. In order to revoke the Trust, you need to be the grantor in charge of the Trust. This is typically the case with Living Trusts; however, there are exceptions where separate grantors are appointed. In such cases, where there are grantors, the grantors will have to act to revoke the Trust.

The Trustee has to follow two procedures to revoke the Trust: first the grantor must re-establish all assets listed in the Trust as the property of the individual, where the property is no longer under the Trust.

Second step involves filing of a document called Revocation of Living Trust. This document, with all the appropriate information will then need to be notarized by a public notary before the individual can file the document with the court. The Revocation of Living Trust form is free to use. It is important to ensure that all assets are changed to reflect the revocation of the Trust and appointing new beneficiaries, etc.

Finally, you may seek the assistance of the attorney who drafted the Living Trust, or another attorney in your area specializing in estate law, in case you need any specific advice.

What is the procedure to make the Living Trust document legal?

Once you have created the Living Trust document, you will need to formally sign, date, witness, and notarize the document with the public notary. This process makes the Living Trust an enforceable document.

Since a Trust cannot be empty, you may formally transfer a sum, of whatever amount, to show that the Trust is ready and functioning.

Several laws govern the actions of the Trust as well as the Trustee. Trustees are obligated to keep beneficiaries up to date and informed about the activities and administration of the Trust and of any other facts necessary to protect their interests. If you have questions regarding the law in relation to Living Trust, contact the Experts.
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Recent Living Trust Questions

  • My grandparents passed away, and my aunt is conservator of

    My grandparents passed away, and my aunt is conservator of the estate (their Living Trust indicated she was the first beneficiary, then I am second after her). Bonds were secured in my name, and now they are in her hands. She is not responsive to email, phone or US mail. What recourse do I have? Just wait until which time the natural transition of life occurs, and the legal responsibility eventually becomes my responsibility?
  • 1. Can I make changes to my living trust, living will, pour

    1. Can I make changes to my living trust, living will, pour over will, durable power of attorney and durable power of attorney for health care with one amendment document or do I need to use a separate amendment for each of the documents?
    2. All of the documents were signed and put into effect on 12 Jul 2000. They are all kept in a single loose leaf folder. Can the wills and power of attorneys be Articles/Parts or annexes of the Living Trust?
    Thanks,
    Jack Freeman
  • Can this amendment (shown below) to Article 8 be dissolved

    Can this amendment (shown below) to Article 8 be dissolved 6 months after the period related to the "Specific Gift..." for the 24/7 care provided by Lance Lyon and Stephanie Hodge has been completed (Settlor moved into assisted living per doctor's orders) and not satisfied (payed or attended to in any way) by the Settlor?

    HAROLD H. LYON,the Surviving Settlor of the LYON FAMILY TRUST dated August 18, 1999 (the "Trust"), in accordance with the power granted to him under the Trust Agreement, hereby amends the Survivor's Trust established under the LYON FAMILY TRUST in the following particulars only:
    1. Article 8 is hereby amended by adding a new Paragraph to such Article, which Paragraph shall read in its entirety as follows:
    "Specific Gift to LANCE LYON and STEPHANIE HODGE: The Settlor hereby declares that his son and daughter-in-law, LANCE LYON and STEPHANIE HODGE, are currently living in his home and providing him with twenty-four (24) hour care. This care began in approximately September 2012 and is anticipated to continue for the foreseeable future. In recognition of their having provided the past care and anticipated future care for the foreseeable future, as a gift and not as compensation, the Settlor hereby directs the Trustee to distribute a specific gift upon the Settlor's death to LANCE LYON and STEPHANIE HODGE equal to Ten Thousand Dollars ($10,000) per month beginning September 2012 for each full or partial month thereafter that they continue to provide care to the Settlor until such time as the Settlor dies, or LANCE LYON and STEPHANIE HODGE are unable or unwilling to provide such care, whichever event shall occur first. This specific gift shall be made prior to dividing and distributing the Trust Estate as set forth in Paragraph 8.2. In the event both LANCE LYON and STEPHANIE HODGE die prior to distribution of this specific gift,such gif tshall be distributed to their daughter HARPER LEE LYON. "
    2.
    Article 8, Paragraph 8.2 is hereby amended so that following amendment said Paragraph shall read in its entirety as follows:
    "Division of Trust Estate Upon Death of Surviving Spouse: Upon the death of the Surviving Spouse, the Trustee shall divide and distribute the Trust Estate from each of the foregoing Trusts as follows:
    A. Forty percent (40%) of the combined value of the Survivor's Trust, Marital Trust, and Credit Shelter Trust shall be distributed outright and free of trust to LANCE BENTLEY LYON and STEPHANIE HODGE, share and share alike. In the event either LANCE BENTLEY LYON or STEPHANIE HODGE predecease distribution, the deceased individual's share of the Trust Estate shall be distributed entirely to the one of whom of LANCE BENTLEY
    LYON or STEPHANIE HODGE is living at the time of distribution. In the event both LANCE BENTLEY LYON and STEPHANIE HODGE this gift shall be distributed to their daughter HARPER LEE LYON. This share of the Trust shall be distributed from the Marital Trust and Credit Shelter Trust up to LANCE BENTLEY LYON's one-third (1/3) share there of, and the balance from the Survivor's Trust;
    B. Fifty percent (50%) of the rest, residue and remainder of the Trust Estate, after the distributions set forth in Sub paragraph A above shall be distributed outright and free of trust to LONNIE MICHAEL LYON, if he is then living and if not, to his then living issue, by right of representation; and
    C. Fifty percent (50%) of the rest, residue and remainder of the Trust Estate, after the distributions set forth in Sub-paragraph A above shall be distributed outright and free of trust to LAURIE PAULETTE LYON, if she is then living and if not, to her then living issue, by right of representation."
    3. NO CONTEST CLAUSE
    If, without probable cause (as defined in California Probate Code §21311 (b) or any successor statute), any beneficiary of any trust created by this document, singly or in conjunction with any other person or persons, files a direct contest (as defined in California Probate Code §2131 0 or any successor statute) that alleges the invalidity of this document or anyone or more of its terms or that alleges the invalidity of any Will of HAROLD H. LYON or anyone or more of its terms, which is in existence on the date this document is executed, then the right of that person to take any interest given to him or her by this document shall be determined as it would have been determined had the person predeceased the execution of this Amendment without surviving issue.
    The Trustee is authorized to defend, at the expense of the Trust Estate, any contest or other attack of any nature of this Amendment or any of its provisions.
    In all other respects, the LYON FAMILY TRUST shall remain unchanged and in full force and effect.
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