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Questions about Revocable Living Trust Agreement

What is a revocable living trust?

A Living Trust or Revocable Trust, or a Revocable Living Trust, are essentially the same Trust. It is a trust where the "Grantor" the person with the assets, transfers the assets to a "Trust" during his/her lifetime, where the grantor acts as the "Trustee", for the benefit of all "Beneficiaries", which may include the grantor and others. The word "revocable" says it all. The trust can be revoked by the grantor at any time at his/her discretion. Although a revocable living trust can also be created just by verbal agreement, it is normal for a written document to be prepared which evidences the creation of the trust. Below are some of the most common questions about a revocable living trust.

What is a living trust bequest?

A bequest is the act of giving (not the act of receiving) property by will. Strictly "bequest" is used to denote personal property, and the devise of real property. In legal terminology, "bequeath" is a verb form meaning "to make a bequest" or to award something to someone. A living trust bequest is an act of giving during the lifetime of the person who creates the trust, called the grantor, as opposed to testamentary trusts that form upon the grantor's death.

What is the difference between a Living Will and a Revocable Trust? Can you do an addendum to a Living Will making it a Revocable Trust?

A living will is a legal document that allows you to write down your wishes with regard to what medical procedures you want, or do not want to receive if you are in an irreversible coma, have been diagnosed with a terminal illness, or are suffering from a severe injury and are not expected to fully recover. In other words, a living will is specifically designed to deal with questions about life-ending versus life-sustaining procedures in the event you are terminally ill. A revocable living trust on the other hand is a legal document that is created by an individual, called a Grantor, to hold and own the grantor’s assets, which are in turn invested and spent for the benefit of the Beneficiary by the Trustee — the grantor can also be the beneficiary and the trustee of a revocable trust.

Both the living will and revocable trust have specific purposes and scope and one can usually not be converted into the other through an addendum. If you already have a living will, you should ideally create a new document to be your revocable trust.

How can someone revoke a revocable living trust?

The one that granted the living trust can draft a written statement asking for the living trust to be revoked. The written request will normally need be notarized for authentication.

Can you change the domicile of a revocable living trust from the original state to their current resident state with an amendment or is a whole new trust required?

You can usually change any provision of a revocable living trust through an amendment. In this situation, an amendment with a simple change is perhaps a better option as compared to creating a new trust. A new trust or an amendment and restatement would be ideal if there are significant changes to the provision of the trust itself or if a major portion of the trust is to be changed.

Creating a revocable living trust, making changes to it and revoking it can either be simple or complex depending on your individual circumstances. If you are not sure of the legalities, you could seek Expert legal insights on your revocable living trust.
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