Why are certain trusts referred to as “living”?

I’m often asked the question, why are certain trusts referred to as “living”? A Trust is simply a means of holding and transferring property. A Trust serves as a Will substitute. In other words, property placed in a Trust will pass pursuant to the terms of the Trust as opposed to a Will at your death and avoids probate. Trusts can be revocable or irrevocable. A Revocable Trust, as its name implies, can be changed or amended by the creator of the Trust (known as the “Trustor” or “Settlor”) at any time, unless the Trustor is deceased or incapacitated.

The person in charge of the managing the assets in the Trust is called the “Trustee”. During your lifetime, you serve as the trustee. “Funding” is the process of transferring assets into the Trust. For example, real estate is transferred into your trust by the execution of a deed. For an automobile, this would be accomplished by changing the ownership of the car on the Certificate of Title. A Living Trust is a trust that is funded while the Trustor is alive. After the death of the Trustor, the assets in the Trust will be distributed in accordance with the terms of the Trust and avoid probate.

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Drizin Law is providing this information for educational purposes only. It should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion as to any specific facts or circumstances. This information is based on general principles of Nevada law at the time it was created and you should be aware laws frequently change. Moreover, the laws affecting you may differ depending on the circumstances. You should consult with a qualified attorney in your own state or jurisdiction concerning your particular situation. Review of this information does not create an attorney-client relationship.