A trust is an entity created for the purpose of holding the property of another for the benefit of that person or another. The trustee is the person entrusted to manage the trust in accordance with the terms of the trust. Upon death, the assets of the trust are distributed directly to beneficiaries, bypassing the probate process.
Trusts can also serve other special purposes, such as providing for a family member with special needs, leaving money to charity, or avoiding estate taxes if you have substantial wealth. At The Law Office of Cathy Steele, P.C., we are familiar with several different types of trusts to accomplish your estate planning goals.
Contact us today to discuss drafting your will and the establishment of trusts to meet your needs. Located in Clayton, Missouri, our law firm represents clients from all walks of life in the St. Louis metro area, including communities of St. Louis City, St. Louis County, St. Charles County and Jefferson County.
No matter what level of assets you own, we typically recommend a revocable living trust. The chief benefit of a living trust is the immediate continuity and ease of estate administration — your property transfers directly to your heirs, upon your death, without going through probate.
"Revocable" means that the trust can be altered (or terminated) while you are still living; you can add or subtract beneficiaries, or add or subtract assets as your family grows or your needs change.
Attorney Cathy Steele has practiced in estate planning for over 35 years in the St. Louis area. She is knowledgeable about all types of trusts, such as:
- Generation-skipping trusts to defer estate taxes
- Qualified trusts to confer tax advantages to beneficiaries of an IRA retirement plan
- Special needs trusts: This sets aside money for a disabled child without disqualifying him or her for Social Security, Medicare or other state benefits. It also can protect proceeds that the disabled person received from a personal injury settlement or other judgment.
- Charitable trusts to support a favorite cause after you are gone
A trust can disburse all assets upon your death, or ration them out over a number of years. It can also be created to put stipulations on inheritance, such as attaining a certain age. Our lawyer can help you designate a successor trustee and design the terms of the trust to align with your needs and desires.
For comprehensive estate planning or questions about a certain kind of trust, call The Law Office of Cathy Steele toll free at 314-727-7551 or contact us online. We offer a free phone consultation and can arrange evening and weekend appointments.