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Funding a trust after executing it is very important

Posted on April 12, 2019

There are many unexpected things that happen in people’s lives in Missouri. These can include problems with their homes, car accidents, illnesses and other things. However, people know that these types of events are possible and therefore they try to plan based on the fact that they know these events could occur. For these types of problems people usually buy insurance to ensure the problems are fixed.

Another unexpected event that occurs in people’s lives is death. All people will pass away and some deaths are more unexpected than others and that is why it is also important to plan for people’s deaths as well. People cannot take their property with them and it is important the property is given to the proper people. The way people can plan for this is through estate planning. One option people have when they go through the estate planning process is to set up a trust which directs where property will go and has the added benefit of avoiding the probate process.

However, the trust document acts like a will, which would go through probate, unless the person funds the trust. Funding a trust means transferring property to the trust. In order to do this while the person is living they must transfer the titles of the property to the trust so the trust becomes the owner of the property. So, title to homes, cars, bank accounts must be transferred to the trust as if the person was selling the assets. If the person is the beneficiary such as for a retirement accounts, life insurance and other assets then they must name the trust as the beneficiary.

There are many options people in Missouri have during the estate planning process, but it is important that people go through the process. One option is a trust, which is a legal document in which the person transfer ownership of their assets to a trust and a trustee administers the assets. This property will then be transferred to the beneficiaries of the trust when the person dies. However, in order to ensure the trust has property to transfer, titles must actually be transferred to the trust. Experienced attorneys understand how to both execute the trust and fund it and may be a useful resource.