There are a few different people involved in the creation and management of your living trust. The first of these is you, the grantor. This is the person who sets up the trust and you might hear this referred to as other names, such as creator, settlor, or trustor. As the creator of a living trust, you have the ability to update it at any time. Another person involved is the trustee and the successor trustee.
The trustee is the primary person who will manage the assets inside the trust. In revocable living trusts, this is usually the grantor at which point it will transfer over to the successor trustee when the grantor passes away. A successor trustee is also the person who can step in in the event that you become incapacitated. The final party involved in a trust are the beneficiaries.
These are all of the people for whom the trust has been created. They are the ones who will benefit from the trust’s assets. Usually, your estate will go to a surviving spouse but if there is no surviving spouse, assets will pass to the people that you have named in your living trust and you are not limited in who you want to receive your estate.
You can use your trust to pass on assets to friends, relatives, children or charitable organizations. Scheduling a consultation with an experienced living trust attorney is the first step in understanding how this tool can be used to help you accomplish your individual goals.
Our Pasadena estate planning law firm has solid experience in helping other people use trusts as part of their estate plan. When you have questions about the various roles involved, it can be helpful to speak with a lawyer about your options.