Frequently Asked Questions About Trusts

Is Married Beneficiary’s Interest in a Trust Separate or Community Property?

Texas defines separate property as property owned before marriage or acquired by gift or inheritance. For example, if you purchased a house before you were married, the house would be your separate property. Likewise, if you inherited a house, even while you are married, the house would be your separate property. However, income earned from … Read More

Do I Need To Record My Trust in Texas?

In Texas a trust is a not a legal entity. Rather, it is a legal relationship in which a Trustee holds legal title for the benefit of another person called the beneficiary. Unlike a corporation, which is required file certificate of formation with the Secretary of State, there is no such requirement for a Trust. … Read More

What are the Responsibilities and Duties of a Trustee of a Testamentary Trust?

Wills sometimes create testamentary trusts, trusts that spring to life after the death of a testator. When a testator includes a testamentary trust in his Will, the testator has the opportunity to designate who will manage the trust. A Trustee is a person (or persons) or an institution named to control and manage such trusts. … Read More

To Trust Or Not To Trust

Last Christmas, the only thing on my older children’s Christmas list was a laptop computer. As they have gotten older, school assignments have increasingly required access to one. Teachers post assignments online. Many assignments are done online, or require essays that need to be typed. So, when my dad asked what my children wanted for … Read More

Living Trust Scams

Many of us have seen advertisements touting the benefits of a living trust. Salespersons who promote living trusts claim they can reduce taxes, protect assets from creditors, and reduce the time and expense of probate, seemingly suggesting that other forms of estate planning cannot achieve those goals. According to the State Bar of Texas, sales of … Read More

What Assets Are Protected From Creditors in Texas?

I get a lot of calls and emails from individuals interested in protecting their assets by creating a trust for their own benefit. Often, they do not have large estates or unusual risk factors. They’ve just read or heard about how litigious our society is and want to take whatever steps necessary to protect what … Read More