Troutman Sanders LLP: Virginia Will Become Friendlier to Trustees on July 1, 2012

By David N. Anthony , Melissa Roberts Tannery and Tania S. Sebastian A change in Virginia law effective July 1, 2012, will limit trustee liability with respect to directed trusts, which is good news for corporate and individual trustees alike. The amendment to Virginia Code Section 55-548.08 , which...

Troutman Sanders LLP: Virginia Trust Law to Help Protect Assets from Creditors While Still Enjoying the Assets Takes Effect on July 1, 2012

By David N. Anthony , Melissa Roberts Tannery and Tania S. Sebastian Beginning July 1, 2012, Virginia will allow its residents to create qualified self-settled spendthrift trusts and achieve some protection from creditors. Va. Code Ann. §§ 55-545.03:02 and 55-545.03:03 . Under current Virginia...

Troutman Sanders LLP: New Virginia Law Authorizes Trust Decanting, Allowing A Trustee To Change Some Provisions of An Irrevocable Trust

By Carol F. Burger , Molly F. James , Melissa Roberts Tannery and Tania S. Sebastian Effective July 1, 2012, Virginia has a new law which permits the trustee to change some provisions of an irrevocable trust by appointing or decanting income and/or principal of a trust to another trust, under certain...

Intentionally Defective Grantor Trusts on the Chopping Block?

Persons who have relied upon certain trusts as a means of limiting estate taxes upon their death might have cause for concern regarding an Obama administration budget proposal for 2013. While the current proposal remains very broad, and thus might be subject to change down the road, as it stands now...

Historic Estate & Gift Tax Savings Opportunities Almost Gone

By: David R. Schoenhaar, Esq.* We are half way through 2012 and the generous tax legislation that went into effect on January 1, 2011, is scheduled to sunset on December 31, 2012, if Congress fails to act. Those who can participate in significant gift planning must act now if they plan to take...

Historic Estate & Gift Tax Savings Opportunities Almost Gone

By: David R. Schoenhaar, Esq.* We are half way through 2012 and the generous tax legislation that went into effect on January 1, 2011, is scheduled to sunset on December 31, 2012, if Congress fails to act. Those who can participate in significant gift planning must act now if they plan to take advantage...

Amendment of Trust by Grantor’s Attorney-in-Fact

An irrevocable and unamendable trust can be revoked or amended during the life of the grantor under certain limited circumstances. New York's Estate Powers and Trust Law (EPTL) provides in Section 7-1.9 that upon the written acknowledged consents of all persons beneficially interested in a trust...

Morrison & Foerster LLP: Decanting a California Trust

By Joshua Glucoft,* Morrison & Foerster LLP In the administration of an irrevocable trust, situations can arise that were beyond the anticipation of the trustor. Therefore a trustee may want to "decant" a trust by transferring funds from one trust to another with preferable terms...

Trusts and Florida Homestead Property

Florida is a rather unique state in rights associated with homestead exemptions from forced sale. In a nutshell, it is nearly impossible for creditors to force the sale of a homestead (a situation famously highlighted by OJ Simpson, who purchased a large estate in Florida in part to avoid creditors)...

New York Appellate Court Broadens the Powers of an Attorney-In-Fact

By: Jennifer F. Hillman, Esq. A recent decision out of the New York Appellate Division Second Department broadened the range of powers enumerated to an attorney-in-fact to include the ability to amend a previously executed irrevocable inter vivos trust. The facts in Perosi v. LiGreci , 948...

Florida Court Finds that Settlor Lacked Requisit Capacity to Execute Trust Amendment

In the Florida case of Jervis v. Tucker, 37 Fla. L. Weekly D349 (Fla. 4th DCA 2012) [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ], Bernice J. Meikle executed a revocable trust agreement in 1991, which she subsequently amended by executing a first amendment. Her trust, as amended by the first...

James Cox on Uniform Trust Code in Virginia and West Virginia

By James Cox * In part as a result of the increasing use of trusts in estate planning and the lack of a comprehensive codification of the law of trusts, the Virginia Assembly adopted effective July 1, 2006, the Virginia version of the Uniform Trust Code (UTC). West Virginia followed suit, and adopted...

Naming a Trustee Is a Key Florida Estate Planning Decision

Every Sarasota and Manatee County Florida resident leaving property and assets to their heirs at death, via a trust, must consider who will run the trust after they have passed away. The chosen fiduciary will be responsible for managing the assets the trust owns and making distributions to your loved...

Standing to Object to Revocable Trust Transactions during Settlor’s Life

Often the settlor of a lifetime revocable trust is the only person who has an interest in the income and principal of the trust during his or her lifetime. Sometimes the settlor of such a trust is the sole trustee or serves with another. In other circumstances, there are trustees other than the settlor...

The New Massachusetts Pet Trust | Ensuring Your Animals are Cared for Part 1

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has been very busy over the past few years overhauling much of its probate code to reflect modern family circumstances. With respect to traditional estate planning, for example, the code changes Massachusetts estate distribution to ensure that all children in mixed marriage...

Have you funded your revocable trust?

What is the difference between a revocable trust that prevents your estate from going through probate, and a revocable trust that's just a stack of papers? The answer: funding your revocable trust . This is an essential step you must take once the ink is dry on your documents. Without proper funding...

Morrison & Foerster LLP: Dynasty Trusts: The Perpetuities Patchwork and Other Considerations

By Genevieve M. Moore , Morrison & Foerster LLP As the year winds down, many of our clients are taking advantage of the unprecedented opportunity to make gifts of up to $5,120,000, per donor, free of any federal gift tax. Since the federal generation-skipping transfer tax (GST) exemption is...

Minor children? Here are the steps you need to take to protect them

The importance of life insurance for parents with young children cannot be overstated. However, insurance is just one part of the story. To ensure your child's financial security, you need to properly plan for how the proceeds will be distributed to your child, as well as for how your child's...

Ask Liza: Should We Get Married? Estate Planning for Same Sex Couples Now

By Liza Weiman Hanks | Dear Liza: My long term domestic partner of 30 years and I were registered domestic partners for a few years and then she decided she wanted to be totally financially independent of me so we terminated the agreement last year. We are still together as a couple and live five...

Estate Failed to Prove Museum’s Laches on Claim to a 3,000 Year Old Archeological Artifact Missing Since WWII

By John G. Farinacci, Esq. In a rather unique ceremony at the Nassau County Surrogate’s Court on December 4, 2013, Surrogate Edward W. McCarty, III ordered and presided over the physical return of an ancient Assyrian artifact from the possession of an executor of a decedent’s estate to...

The Cats Win, The Dogs Lose: Court Upholds the Validity of Pet Trust For Cats

By Peter K. Kelly | Leonore Abels in her Will provided that her residuary pass in trust for her husband Joel Abels and, in the alternative should he predecease her, all of her property be sold, except her house, and held by the trustee to maintain her home, to pay a salary and bonus to her housekeeper...

Ask Liza: Estate Planning Beats Avoidance

By Liza Weiman Hanks | Dear Liza: We live in Nebraska. I own a ranch with my brother. Part of it we inherited and a small part we purchased from family members. The total value of the ranch is $2.7 million. We have a buy sell agreement between us. We have estate questions and aren’t sure where...

Ask Liza: Naming a Minor as a Beneficiary of an IRA

By Liza Weiman Hanks | Dear Liza: I want to name my minor grandchildren as beneficiaries of my IRA account. How do I do that? Can I use my Will? It’s a smart idea to name minors as beneficiaries of your IRAs. Since they are young, they’ll be able to withdraw that money slowly over their...

Ask Liza: The Right Plan For Now: Living Trust

By Liza Weiman Hanks Dear Liza, I’m a young professional and would greatly appreciate your feedback on what type of trust, if any, would suit me well given my current financial and life position. I’m single, 29 years old (30 later this year), with cash, stocks, and a stake in a high-growth...

Ask Liza: Creditor’s Claims and Trust Administration

By Liza Weiman Hanks Dear Liza: I am the successor trustee of my parents trust. The have both passed and I was told before I disburse the assets I need to advertise a Notice to Creditors. How long and how many times do I need to advertise? Since I don’t know which state you live in, I can...