Funding your trust
If your estate plan includes a Revocable Living Trust, the trust must be properly funded as soon as possible. This step is of VITAL IMPORTANCE. Assets must be transferred to the trust or set up to transfer to your trust upon your death. Our office will have taken care of the transfer of any real estate into your trust during the process of creating your estate plan.
However, you must now take care of putting other assets like bank accounts and retirement accounts into your trust. This is generally accomplished by coordinating with your financial institution. If this is not done, you will have wasted your time and money as your assets will have to be probated and your wishes may not be protected. When you sign your documents, we will provide you with guidelines regarding funding your trust and answer any questions you may have. We also work closely with financial planners who are trained in walking a client through the funding process.
Your Real Estate
If you own real estate, our office will prepare deeds for your property and will record them for you with the proper county recorder as part of your estate planning process. You should receive a copy of these newly recorded deeds, and our office will also keep a copy on file for you.
- If the name of your trust does not contain your first and last name, it is common to get a notification from the Property Tax Assessor’s office requesting to verify that you are the beneficiary of your trust. It is extremely important that you do not ignore this letter. Failure to submit any requested information may result in reassessment of your property, increasing your property tax bill, or supplemental property taxes. You can satisfy the request by calling the number on the letter and sending a copy of the “Declaration of Trust” section in your trust binder.
- Once your new deeds have been recorded, you may receive official-looking letters which seem to require you to pay additional fees to comply with the law or protect yourself. These are only solicitations; there are no additional fees required beyond what our office has already paid on your behalf. Please do not pay any additional money to anyone, including the assessor, without our express instruction.
- Please do not hesitate to contact our office with any questions you have about correspondence you receive or the procedure for responding to the Assessor’s office as described above.
- If you refinance your property and your lender takes your property out of the trust during that process, we suggest you contact our office to check that your property is put properly back into your trust once your refi is complete.