Family Health Legal Library

Revocable and Irrevocable Living Trusts

Differences If Your Trust Is A Joint Revocable Living Trust

We have provided a sample of a Joint Revocable Living Trust. You should know that this is simply a sample of such a trust, and that each state law may affect the provisions which can be set forth in your trust to make it valid. Of course, this same state law may render some of the provisions in your trust invalid, if the law is not fully complied with in the creation of your trust. Also, each year state trust laws change through both legislative action and the judiciary opinions. Your trust created one year may not be effective the following year, if your state laws have changed.

It is critical to examine your trust needs with an attorney experienced in this area, and not to create your own living trust based on the documents provided here. These documents are only provided so that a general understanding of the trust concept can be gained.

The detailed discussion of the Revocable Living Trust in almost every respect applies here, and thus, will not be repeated. There is one noticeable difference between the Revocable Living Trust and the Joint Revocable Living Trust: there is a provision in Articles IV and V providing for what should be done with any property in the trust between the joint Trustors. Both Articles are lengthy and should be reviewed carefully.

With respect to Article IV, we included a provision which will ensure that during the lifetime of each Trustor, each will be treated in accordance with the manner in which they were accustomed to being treated at the time the trust was formed. This means that in the event one spouse is disabled, the Trustee is instructed to make certain that both spouses are taken care of in a manner in which they are accustomed, even if this means using up the Trust property, so that the beneficiaries may be left with nothing.

With respect to Article V, this provides instructions on how the property is to be distributed after the death of the first Trustor. Once again, this method of distribution is just one suggestion and there are different methods by which to distribute property. These can be interchanged, if for example, you wanted to create a Joint Revocable Living Trust, but also wanted to make a specific distribution(s). Specific distributions can be made in almost any trust, and are simply a designation of specific property or money that should be distributed to a specific person or persons. To be sure that your property will be distributed in the manner in which you desire, you should decide how you wish the property to be distributed and then consult with an attorney.

Revocable and Irrevocable Living Trusts
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