How to Wrap Up a Trust? | Steps to Wrap Up a Trust

How to wrap up a Trust?

In this episode, Chris Berry answers the question: What are the steps to wrap up a trust?

Estate Attorney and Advisor Chris Berry of Castle Wealth Group answers questions on retirement and estate planning every Wednesday at 1pm. Register via this link or give our office a call at 844-885-4200.

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Episode Transcript

What are the steps to wrap up a trust welcome to Berry’s Bites. Please join our host attorney and financial advisor Chris Berry. The issue here is someone passed away how do we wrap up their affairs and what happens is state administration and there are four ways assets transfer out of someone’s name. 

First would be joint ownership it passes to whoever you’re listed joint to. Second, would be a beneficiary designation so if he listed a beneficiary on a life insurance policy 401k. Third, would be through a trust fourth would be probate that’s what we want to try to avoid so if an asset doesn’t go through joint ownership beneficiary designation trust, then it ends up going into probate and so what happens when someone passes away and there’s a trust well what happens is that first, we need to get a death certificate. 

You’re going to get that from the funeral home they’re going to typically reach out to social security as well as the VA and then once you have that death certificate then it would be a call to our office or whoever prepared the trust to do a certificate of trust and now the certificate of trust says that the successor trustee can now make decisions like the initial trustee can. So that successor trustee then would send that certificate of trust and that death certificate either to the financial institutions like us if we’re the ones managing the money or to whatever other financial institutions there are whether it’s Bank of America or fifth third or chase and then they’d have to follow the terms of the trust. 

And basically, it’s wrap up the final affairs pay off any expenses usually that takes a month or two and then once we’re comfortable all the expenses are paid then it would be following the distribution terms of the trust and whether that’s distributions outright or the distributions where now we open up separate share trust for our beneficiaries and we turn over that trust now to the beneficiary joint ownership. And beneficiary designations are the simplest way to pass assets but understand there’s a lot of problems that go along with those joint ownership and beneficiary designations are great for naming a married spouse but when it comes to naming like kids or other beneficiaries that’s where the trust really shines as typically the best way to pass assets to the next generation and remember a will does not avoid probate a will gives instructions to probate court on how to administer the estate. Thank you

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