Wills & Trusts
What Can Be Specified In A Trust?
Generally, one of the most important parts of the trust provisions are the distribution provisions, that is, who gets what, and when. All types of distributions are possible, but it is important to make a crucial distinction here between a will and a trust. A will distributes the property in your estate not held by another person or entity and not including certain items, such as life insurance proceeds and pension plans.
However, a trust can only distribute the assets of the trust. A Trust Estate is not synonymous with your estate. Only if you take the time to properly transfer into the trust one or more assets can these be distributed according to the terms of the trust. Thus, no matter what you say in the trust about the distribution of your residence, if you do not change the ownership of the house from title in your name to title in the trust name, the trust distribution provision will not have any effect, and the house will be distributed by the terms of your will, if you have one, or by the laws of your state if you do not.
A review of the Will section might help to understand the concerns associated with gifts.