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8 Lesser Known Trusts You Should Consider For Your Estate Plan

Jun 28, 2024

When you want to leave behind your legacy according to your specific wishes, help set up your loved ones for their future, and ensure that your assets are protected, a fantastic option is to set up a trust. 

There are many kinds of trusts that operate according to different principles, and many popular ones can allow you to meet your estate planning goals. However, there are also some lesser known trusts that can allow you to achieve more niche objectives, whether it means protecting your pets or passing down highly specific assets.

The Law Office of Michelle E. Murphy has been creating trusts for our clients for over two decades, helping them to craft estate plans that help secure ideal futures for their families. Here are detailed explanations of some trusts that aren’t as widely used but might be useful to you depending on your specific needs! 

Read on to find out about some of the lesser known types of trusts you should consider when planning for your future with our estate planning attorney. 

Pet Trust

If you have furry loved ones in your life, you know that they are as important as family. When you set up a pet trust for your dogs, cat, birds, ferrets, and so on, you can appoint a trusted caretaker to provide for your pets should you predecease them or become too incapacitated to care for them. The funds that you set up in this trust will go toward their care, so you can be sure that your pets will be provided for no matter the circumstances. The future of your pets deserves consideration!

Blind Trust

If for some reason you need to make your estate planning choices private, you might want to consider speaking with your lawyer about a blind trust. When you create a blind trust, neither you as the trustor nor your beneficiary know what is going on with the trust after it is established. Instead, you appoint a trustee to manage the trust and make decisions on your behalf. This trust is ideal for avoiding conflicts of interest, particularly if you are a high profile figure or run a business where your financial choices might cause conflict.

Qualified Terminable Interest Property (QTIP) Trust

A QTIP trust is designed to benefit a surviving spouse. Through the use of this trust, you can receive shared assets between yourself and your spouse while still qualifying for a marital deduction after your spouse passes away. Work with your estate planning lawyer to ensure that you are in compliance with guidelines that will allow you or your loved one to benefit from the tax advantages that this trust affords. It’s a great tool for making sure that your spouse is cared for even after you are gone!

Purpose Trust

If you have a specific purpose in mind for establishing a trust, you can allow the purpose trust to live up to its name. You do not necessarily need beneficiaries in order to establish this trust. Purposes for establishing this trust often include maintaining your homestead, supporting a business, providing caretaking of your pets, maintaining your specialized collections, or even for supporting your charitable giving. If you have a goal for your trust in mind, it is best to hammer out the specifics with an estate planning attorney to decide if this trust is the best vehicle for your goals.

Incentive Trust

Are you a parent who wants your child to learn the value of hard work? To earn a degree in higher education? To join a particular club, team, or society? To get married? To quit a bad habit? When you set up an incentive trust, you attach goals to it that your beneficiary must reach in order to access the funds of the trust. You can use this type of trust to motivate your loved one toward great achievements. 

Oil, Gas, And Mineral Trust

Particularly relevant to Texas, you can set up a trust to protect your rights and interests from the mining of natural resources such as oil, gas, and minerals. You can leave funds from mining to your loved ones, as well as your rights to mine these resources, by setting them up in a trust. There can be legal complications regarding these types of rights, including issues of land ownership, so work closely with your estate planning lawyer when you want to establish this type of trust. 

Gun Trust

Since Texas is a state that is friendly to gun owners, citizens might be interested in protecting or passing down their gun collection, which can be accomplished legally with a gun trust. Guns, other weapons, and accessories can be held in this trust to be passed down to people who you believe are responsible enough to inherit your firearms. You also have the option of passing down your gun rights in the gun trust, which allows your loved ones to access your firearms without having to pay taxes on them or file the typically required paperwork with local law enforcement.

Totten Trust

Also called a payable on death account, this straightforward type of trust will allow you to transfer wealth to your named beneficiary without the funds having to pass through probate. This trust is more like a bank account that you open in the name of the person who will be receiving the funds. When you die, your wealth will reach your beneficiary directly. Unlike some, this type of trust can be altered, the funds can be withdrawn, and you can change your beneficiary at any time. If you want a simple and direct option for passing down your wealth, this type of trust is an excellent option.

The Law Office Of Michelle E. Murphy Can Set Up Trusts That Meet Your Estate Planning Goals

For over 20 years, the Law Office of Michelle E. Murphy has been helping Texans protect their legacies and pass down essential assets to their loved ones. With estate planning services that encompass trusts and beyond, you can rely on Michelle to work closely with you on the accomplishments you want to achieve through your estate plan. Reach out to schedule a free initial consultation and learn more about the trusts you want to establish to help your family and friends.