YOUR LIVING TRUST: WHAT’S IN A NAME?
Wondering what you should name your living trust?
A friend asked me just this week: “If I create a revocable living trust for all my assets, what do I call my trust?”
It used to be the accepted practice that your family name should be a part of the name of your living trust. So John Black would have the John Black Living Trust. All assets held by the Trust would be titled in that name.
That means that the deed to John Black’s residence would say that the owner is John Black, Trustee of the John Black Living Trust, under Trust dated January 15, 2004, for example. The same would be the case with John’s bank accounts, C.D.s, investment accounts, limited liability company membership interest, and all other assets.
However, the practice has changed over the past decade or so. Now with the prevalence of identity theft, it is recommended that you don’t use your family name in the name of your trust.
So What Should You Name Your Living Trust?
For example, John Black might now choose a trust name that means something to him, but which does not include his family name. John likes apples, or owns an apple orchard. His trust might now be called “The Red Apple Living Trust, under trust dated January 15, 2004.”
This won’t totally preclude a chance of identity theft, but it makes it one step more removed, and hence a little bit more difficult for the thief. This now seems to be of major benefit to the trustee.
The banks, title companies, investment houses, and others have no problem with this. The reason is simple. With your trust you now must have a “Trust Certificate” which identifies the name of the trust, the trustee, the named successor trustee, and the trustees powers, with other pertinent information. The trust distribution details and other pertinent information need not be revealed or divulged.
So “what’s in a name?” What should you name your living trust? Whatever you wish it to be — within reason.
Topic: Living Trust