An Irrevocable Living Trust generally cannot be modified or terminated except under certain limited circumstances. It requires the grantor to transfer assets into the trust and give up his or her rights of ownership to these assets. So why would you want to create an Irrevocable Living Trust, as opposed to a Revocable Living Trust?
Irrevocable Living Trusts, when properly designed and implemented, can provide an almost unsurpassed level of asset protection from the high cost of long-term care. And, like Revocable Living Trusts, they spare your family the delays, frustration, and expenses of the probate process. Other reasons to utilize an Irrevocable Living Trust include:
- Tax minimization
- Avoiding the risks of placing assets in the name of your children
- Protecting assets against predators, creditors, and lawsuits
While many different types of Irrevocable Living Trusts are available, in essence, all of them retitle your assets. Assets placed in an Irrevocable Living Trust can include a business, cash, investments, life insurance policies, and more.
Why is an Irrevocable Living Trust better than a Revocable Living Trust at protecting assets against the cost of long-term care?
Under current Medicaid laws, assets in a Revocable Living Trust are not fully protected. Why? Assets in a Revocable Living Trust are available to the Grantor. Medicaid may determine that those assets be used to pay for long-term care. This is not the case with an Irrevocable Living Trust, as long as it is properly designed and implemented to take into account the latest laws governing Medicaid eligibility.
How does an Irrevocable Living Trust protect my child’s inheritance?
When you transfer assets directly to your children, they typically become outright owners of the assets. They also become responsible for the risks associated with owning the assets. A properly drafted and implemented Irrevocable Living Trust will avoid:
- Loss of inheritances due to lawsuits, divorce, remarriage, or the inability of your children to manage money on their own
- Gift tax liability
- Income tax consequences for your children
- Problems with getting financial aid to cover educational and other expenses for your grandchildren
To determine if an Irrevocable Living Trust is right for you and your family, contact us today for an estate planning consultation.