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Virginia Beach Estate Planning Lawyer / Virginia Beach Irrevocable Trust Lawyer

Virginia Beach Irrevocable Trust Lawyer

Expertise in Drafting Powerful Documents That Address Your Specific Needs

When done properly, estate planning is a personal, customized process. Most estate plans include the same basic documents, like a will, a revocable living trust, powers of attorney and advance health care directives. To operate effectively, each of these documents should be tailored to the unique needs, goals and circumstances of the individuals and families involved.

Irrevocable trusts are in a class of their own. These trusts are created to meet a specific need, and not every estate plan requires an irrevocable trust. They also tend to be more detailed and complex and require the assistance of a skilled and experienced estate planning lawyer to draft correctly. Angela Manz is recognized as a Qualified Master Counselor in Trusts and Estates Practice by the Virginia Law Foundation and is well-versed in a variety of irrevocable trusts. Angela and her team at The Law Office of Angela N. Manz work together to make sure you have the right trusts and other documents for a comprehensive estate plan that meets your specific needs. Learn more about irrevocable trusts below, and contact The Law Office of Angela N. Manz to speak with one of our skilled and experienced Virginia Beach irrevocable trust lawyers.

What Is an Irrevocable Trust?

An irrevocable trust is a legal entity created to hold assets that, once transferred, cannot be easily removed or changed without the consent of the trust beneficiaries. Unlike its counterpart, the revocable trust, which can be altered during the lifetime of the settlor, an irrevocable trust is more rigid in its terms. Although the settlor loses flexibility and control over assets placed into an irrevocable trust, there are many situations in which this type of trust is precisely the right tool to meet a specific estate planning need. Some of the most common reasons for creating an irrevocable trust include:

  • Asset Protection: One of the primary reasons many choose to establish an irrevocable trust is the asset protection it offers. Since the assets in the trust no longer belong to the settlor, they are generally shielded from creditors and lawsuits.
  • Estate Tax Benefits: By transferring assets into an irrevocable trust, these assets are typically not considered part of the settlor’s taxable estate. This can lead to significant estate tax savings, especially for high-net-worth individuals.
  • Eligibility for Government Benefits: By placing assets into an irrevocable trust, individuals may reduce their personal net worth, which can be advantageous when applying for certain government benefits that are “means-tested” and limit the income or assets a beneficiary can hold, such as Supplemental Security Income or Medicaid.
  • Avoiding Probate: Assets held in an irrevocable trust avoid the probate process, allowing beneficiaries to receive assets more quickly and without the associated legal fees or headaches probate can bring.
  • Protecting a Child’s Inheritance: Making children beneficiaries of an irrevocable trust can help ensure they receive their inheritance despite a divorce, remarriage, lawsuit, profligate spending habits or financial mismanagement.

When to Consider an Irrevocable Trust

While there are numerous benefits to creating an irrevocable trust, it is crucial to ensure it aligns with your specific needs and circumstances. If you own significant assets or have concerns about future lawsuits or creditors, then an irrevocable trust might benefit you. Additionally, those looking to leave a legacy through charitable giving may find an irrevocable trust to be an efficient tool to accomplish their aims. And for most people who worry about the future cost of a nursing home or long-term care, an irrevocable trust can help achieve and maintain Medicaid eligibility without losing your life savings or hard-earned assets.

Key Considerations Before You Create an Irrevocable Trust

While there are evident advantages to creating an irrevocable trust in certain situations, it’s essential to be aware of some of the less desirable aspects of these legal tools:

  1. Loss of Control: Once assets are transferred into the trust, the settlor generally relinquishes control over those assets. However, the grantor chooses who to give that control to, which is typically a trusted adult child or family member.
  2. Irreversibility: As the name suggests, changes to the trust can be challenging to make, requiring beneficiary consent.
  3. Complexity and Costs: Setting up and maintaining an irrevocable trust requires a certain degree of legal expertise, potentially leading to higher costs compared to other estate planning tools.

Contact The Law Office of Angela N. Manz for Help With Irrevocable Trusts in Virginia Beach

Irrevocable trusts offer a myriad of benefits, from asset protection to tax advantages. However, they also come with limitations. For residents of Virginia Beach, The Law Office of Angela N. Manz offers expert guidance in navigating the complexities of irrevocable trusts, ensuring your estate planning aligns with your particular needs and goals. Please give us a call if you’re considering establishing a trust or have further questions and want to discuss your needs and goals with a qualified and dedicated Virginia Beach estate planning lawyer.

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