One of the most effective ways of protecting your assets and your loved ones is by setting up a trust with the help of our competent Houston trust attorney. Trusts can serve many purposes in a family’s financial, retirement, estate, and tax planning.
At Chargois Harper Attorneys and Counselors at Law, we can assist you in drafting an effective estate plan for the protection and distribution of your properties after your death to maximize the benefits that your beneficiaries may receive. Regardless of whether you are a trustee, settlor, executor, administrator, heir, or beneficiary, we can help. Contact us now and schedule an initial consultation with our top-ranking Texas estate planning lawyers.
Why Do I Need a Trust Attorney in Texas?
Creating a trust can be a complex process that contains provisions, phrases, and instructions that you may not understand. Whether you have a trust in place or are thinking about establishing one, it is crucial to seek legal advice from our trusted Houston trust attorney to ensure your estate planning documents not only reflect changing state and federal tax laws but changes in your goals and circumstances.
At Chargois Harper Attorneys and Counselors at Law, we have more than 30 years of experience in handling probate, estate planning, family law, landlord-tenant, and real estate law needs in Texas and Illinois. Our law firm can help:
- address complex estate planning issues that may arise. From probate administration to durable powers of attorney, we are prepared to help you navigate the ever-changing laws in Texas.
- provide exceptional estate planning services, including planning, drafting, and funding different types of trusts and other estate planning documents.
- work closely with our clients to assess their needs, creating comprehensive estate planning strategies to protect wealth, eliminate unnecessary taxes, and provide our clients with peace of mind.
Whether you’re planning for the future or going through probate, you can count on us for your estate planning needs in Texas. Contact our law office now and schedule an initial consultation with our Houston estate planning lawyers to help you plan for your family’s future and guide you every step of the way.
What is a Trust?
A trust is a fiduciary arrangement that allows a trustee to hold assets on behalf of a beneficiary. It is a versatile legal tool that can be a key part of your estate plan. It can be arranged in various ways and can specify exactly how and when the assets will be distributed to the named beneficiaries.
A trust can replace or supplement a will and help manage property during your life. It is a great way to reinforce your preferences and goals after death. Our credible Houston trust attorney can help you understand the benefits of setting up a trust as part of your comprehensive estate plan.
What are the Types of Trusts in Texas?
There are many types of trusts, each suited for a specific purpose. Determining the types of trusts that suit your needs requires a detailed review of your familial and financial situation, as well as a thorough discussion of your wishes. A knowledgeable Houston trust lawyer can help you understand the various trust options and select those that fit your particular situation.
Special Needs Trust
A special needs trust, or supplemental needs trust, is a trust set up to provide for a loved one with special needs without jeopardizing their eligibility for critical needs-based benefits. It is a popular strategy for those who want to help someone in need without risking that the person will lose their eligibility for programs that require their income or assets to remain below a certain limit.
A spendthrift trust allows the grantor to name an independent trustee who manages and oversees all distributions. This type of situational trust can also support passing on values and other goal-oriented principles that the grantor deems important.
A revocable trust is considered the most common type of trust. It allows the grantor to retain control of their assets, including modifications to the trust throughout the grantor’s life. It can be changed at any point during your life as long as you’re of sound mind. This can be useful, especially because circumstances change.
An irrevocable trust is a trust that by its terms cannot be revoked by the grantor or can be terminated by the grantor only with the consent of another who has an adverse interest in the trust, that is, someone who stands to benefit from the continued existence of the trust. In some cases, irrevocable trusts are generally preferred over revocable trusts if your primary aim is to reduce the amount subject to estate taxes by effectively removing the trust assets from your estate.
A living trust, or an inter vivos trust, is created through a trust instrument during the grantor’s lifetime. Assets in a living trust do not pass through probate before being distributed to trust beneficiaries.
A trustee is named when the trust is established. This person is in charge of handling the affairs of the trust and transferring the assets to the beneficiaries at the time of the grantor’s death. Living trusts can be revocable or irrevocable.
A testamentary trust, or pour-over trust, is created through a person’s last will and testament. It specifies how an individual’s assets are designated after the grantor’s death. Testamentary trusts do not exist until the grantor passes away, at which point, designated assets will automatically transfer to the trust.
A charitable trust allows you to donate assets to a chosen tax-exempt charitable organization or nonprofit and comes with certain tax benefits to help you minimize what you might owe to the government. One major benefit to the grantor’s heirs is that the money and property in a charitable trust are not included when determining the deceased person’s estate tax. It can also be structured to provide a reliable income stream to you and your beneficiaries for a specific period.
What are the Benefits of Establishing a Trust?
A carefully-planned trust can provide several benefits for you and your beneficiaries. It can be flexible and address various estate planning goals, from simple to complex. A trust can also be useful if you want to leave assets to a beneficiary but want to ensure that these assets are properly managed. A qualified Houston TX trust attorney can help you understand the importance of setting up a trust.
A trust avoids probate proceedings altogether, saving you time and money. Probate is a court-supervised process of validating a will and distributing property when someone dies.
Depending on the value and size of the estate, the probate process can sometimes be lengthy and expensive. However, since the decedent’s estate does not own the property they placed in a trust, that property can avoid probate. This means a faster distribution of assets to your heirs without any additional expenses to the estate.
A trust allows you to transfer ownership of assets while preserving some control through the provisions in your trust agreement. By transferring ownership to a trustee, a trust can act as a shield against those who might have a negative interest in your property.
A trust can provide beneficiaries protection from divorce, lawsuits, or creditors. It can also protect the interests of minor children, aging parents, and other vulnerable family members by setting guidelines for when distributions are made.
Reduce Estate Taxes
Setting up a trust is a great way to reduce, and in some cases eliminate hefty estate taxes. It allows you to reduce the size of your estate by transferring ownership of assets to a trustee.
A trust can be an excellent way to protect and increase the value of your property by letting someone with more experience manage it for you. It can be useful if you do not feel confident managing your assets yourself.
A trust maintains privacy and confidentiality. It is only for the eyes of those involved – trustees and beneficiaries. This allows grantors and beneficiaries to keep a low profile.
Control of Wealth
A trust allows you a certain level of control over your estate that wills cannot provide. The structure of trusts allows you to decide how and when your assets will be distributed.
Call Our Experienced Houston Trust Attorney Now!
Many people want to ensure that the inheritance they leave behind will go to their loved ones. While writing a will is perhaps the most common method, setting up a trust with the help of our seasoned Houston trust attorneys can give your beneficiaries more control over your property and assets.
At Chargois Harper Attorneys and Counselors at Law, we have assisted numerous clients in Houston in creating trusts, wills, and estate plans. Our estate planning law firm develops a strategy that gives you the best chance of protecting your interests.
We can help you determine the best course of action for your estate planning needs. Schedule an initial consultation with our Texas estate planning lawyers who can help you identify your needs, explain your options, and craft legal documents that make your goals a reality.
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