What exactly is a Revocable Living Trust?

A Revocable Living Trust, also simply called a Living Trust, is a legal document that is created by an individual, called a Trustmaker, to hold and own the Trustmaker’s assets, which are in turn invested and spent for the benefit of the Trustmaker.

This covers three phases of a Trustmaker’s life:
1. While the Trustmaker is alive and and in good health
2. If the Trustmaker becomes mentally incapacitated thus making him unable to decide for himself/herself.
3. After the Trustmaker dies.

Phase One of a Revocable Living Trust: The Trustmaker is Alive and Well

If the Trustmaker is good health and sound mind, the trust agreement will have specific rules allowing the Trustmaker to manage, invest, and spend the trust assets as he see fit. Thus, the Trustmaker will go about business as usual with regard to assets. The Trustmaker will also be able to use his or her own Social Security Number as the taxpayer identification number for the trust and file income taxes on IRS form 1040 instead of form 1041.

The next part of the article will cover phase two of a Revocable Living Trust.

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