Frequently Asked Questions About Trusts

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 forRead 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 ofRead More

Can I Create an Asset Protection Trust for my Own Benefit?

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 whatRead More

What is a Spendthrift Trust?

As parents, we all do our best to instill our good values in our children. But sometimes, despite all our guidance, our children make poor personal and financial decisions. Their poor judgment may be a due to a lack of maturity that is temporary, or perhaps a long-term problem stemming from alcohol and drug abuseRead More

Should I Designate My Children’s Guardian as Beneficiaries of My Life Insurance Policy?

I spoke to a young mother several weeks ago who wanted information on how to legally name a guardian for her minor children. She explained that she and her husband had already designated her parents as the beneficiary of their life insurance and retirement plans, but they wanted to make sure her parents also gotRead More