Most of us write many wills over the course of our lives. Due to changes in circumstances, our estate planning ought to adapt as well. A living trust, like a will, can be changed at any time. A revocable living trust’s adaptability is one of its most appealing features: you can amend its conditions or terminate it at any moment. However, one should be careful when making amends to a revocable living trust, as even a minor mistake can invalidate a trust. One can always seek help from an experienced trust and estate attorney.
If you and your spouse formed a joint trust, any of you could terminate it. If you wish to amend any trust conditions, such as the change beneficiary or administrator, you must both consent in writing. Transferring property out of the living trust will almost certainly require both spouses’ approval; purchasers and title insurance agencies often want both spouses’ confirmations on transfer forms. The surviving spouse can modify the trust contract conditions that concern his or her assets when one partner dies, but not the portions that govern what becomes of the dead spouse’s trust assets.
What are Revocable Living Trusts for?
RLTs are trusts that are created to preserve your possessions by shifting title from your name to the trust’s name. Since most of your possessions are controlled by the trust instead of you directly, an RLT can prevent you from getting your property through probate, which is the legal procedure of distributing your property when you die. When you wish to make a modification to your will, the traditional (and generally best) method is to renounce it entirely and prepare a new one. A living trust, on the other hand, presents a unique set of circumstances. You don’t want to cancel the trust, form a new one, and move the property all over again because you’ve already allocated property to it.
The living trust agreement can be “restated” as a remedy. To put it another way, you construct a new trust agreement, but you don’t cancel the old one; instead, you restate it with specific alterations. This allows you to maintain the trust’s initial date and implies you won’t have to do anything with properties currently maintained in the trust.
Making Changes to a Revocable Living Trust
Essentially you may update or modify an RLT in Virginia according to your specific needs. As the term implies, Revocable trusts can be altered or revoked, as opposed to irrevocable trusts, which cannot be modified or canceled.
The most basic approach to changing an RLT is having your trust litigation lawyers draft an amendment, which involves rewriting a section of the original trust contract. After that, the modification may be certified and filed away for preservation. An RLT does not have to be submitted for the official record, contrary to popular belief. On the other hand, these agreements are not part of the public record and are instead preserved or maintained in the same manner that critical estate planning documents are.