Home
Contact Stamford
Wills
Guardian
Lasting Power Of Attorney
Trusts
Family Trust
Pilot Trust
Protecting Your Assets
Funeral
Probate
Weblinks
Humour
About Stamford



TRUSTS

A Trust is a legal arrangement (also known as a "Settlement") that enables you to give away assets but restrict or direct how and when they are used. Trusts can be used to make gifts in your lifetime and they can also be set up under the terms of a Will. Within a trust there are three main participant: The settlor: this is the person who created the trust and normally gives away the assets that are placed in the trust. The beneficiary(s): this is the person(s) who is to receive the assets or benefit from them. Importantly a beneficiary can also be a trustee and/or the settlor. The trustee(s): this is the person(s) who looks after the assets ensuring they are invested/used in accordance with the rules of the trust and general trust laws.

Benefits of Trusts:

It is believed that trusts have been used since Roman times and broadly speaking their purpose has remained the same. In summary a trust enables you to give assets away whilst still retaining a degree of control, which is why they are so commonly used in wills since we all give our assets away then.

Probate: By placing assets in a trust during their lifetime a testator can ensure that they do not have to go through probate. Trustees can distribute assets to beneficiaries immediately thereby substantially reducing the time and costs for the family.

Beneficiary Protection: Sometimes you may wish to gift something to a child or to someone who is mentally infirm. The trust can protect the property until they are older or the trustees can follow your instructions in using the assets to help the beneficiaries.

Asset Protection: Giving directly to a person who is entitled to state benefits can result in them losing their entitlement to such help. By placing these assets in a trust they can still receive government support. This can prove crucial if means testing for long term care fees is an issue, or if you feel that an outright gift to an individual my be claimed by aone of their creditors.

Tax Efficiency: Sometimes a gift into trust can save tax or avoid tax problems which you would incur if making an outright gift. Trusts can be an excellent way to save 1,000s in Inheritance Tax.