In addition to drawing up a will, many Georgia residents have learned about some of the estate planning advantages of creating trusts to benefit their beneficiaries once they’ve passed away. However, figuring out which type of trust best suits your current needs can often be rather complicated.
Your Georgia estate planning attorney can help you review your portfolio of assets, along with your family’s current and future needs, so you can mutually decide upon the type of trust that will best suit your specific purposes.
Here are some of the more common types of trusts people seek to set up in the state of Georgia.
Basic Trusts Often Used by Georgia Residents
- A Living Trust. You can set up one of these while you’re still alive and actually become the grantor, beneficiary and trustee of this legal entity;
- A Marital Dedication Trust. Some spouses prefer creating this type of trust since it guarantees that the surviving spouse will receive specifically designated property upon the other spouse’s death;
- Testamentary Trust. This type of trust simply indicates that it has been created by the terms of your will – after your death;
- Educational Trust. These are often created for rather obvious reasons – to help a specific individual cover education-related expenses such as tuition, books and supplies. Bear in mind that these normally contain provisions for immediately stopping payments once a student either chooses to leave school without finishing or simply flunks a stated number of classes or semesters;
- A Burial Trust. This provides the funds required to cover the costs of your cremation or burial needs. While you can initially set it up as a revocable trust, it becomes irrevocable after you die – its assets can then no longer be used for other needs;
- A Supplemental Needs Trust. This can prove very useful to elderly or disabled individuals who need added income but don’t want to be found ineligible to receive certain types of private or government benefits. When drafted properly, this trust ‘s funds are protected from being seized by creditors or the government;
- A Totten Trust. This type of trust basically indicates that upon your death, a specific bank account will pass directly to a named beneficiary;
- A Charitable Trust. Sometimes called a charitable remainder trust, it provides tax-free gifts for the donor. Typical beneficiaries are your spouse – for a set period of time – often for the remainder of that person’s life. The money left in the trust after your beneficiary’s death is then given to a specific charity. The other types of charitable trusts can be explained to you by your Peachtree estate planning attorney;
- A Spendthrift Trust. These types of trusts are frequently set up to help those who may be mentally incompetent to handle their own financial affairs and need to have certain funds critical for their support held legally off limits from creditors.
While this list of different types of trusts isn’t intended to be exhaustive, it does contain many of the most common trusts requested by Georgia residents. Now that you know more about the various types of trusts you can establish, you can contact a knowledgeable estate planning attorney today in the Law Offices of Shane Smith at (770) 487-8999.