Financial Advice Q&A

New Member
Posts: 1
Should I have a trust?
[ Edited ]

Is it wise to have a trust? Is this service provided by USAA?

Posted: 2014-01-22 06:09 PM
Other Answers: 1
Community Manager
Posts: 398

Without more details it's impossible to tell you if a trust makes sense in your particular situation.  If you're thinking about a trust, consider setting up an appointment with an estate planning attorney. He or she will be able to review the benefits and drawbacks of a trust relative to your specific situation and goals.  


USAA does not draft trusts for our members (with an exception I'll mention below) but USAA does offer trust services if someone is looking for a corporate trustee to manage and administer a trust.  You can read more about those service here.  Trusts can be a valuable tool as part of your overall estate plan and I've seen people employ them to accomplish a number of things:


Avoid probate.  Assets inside of a revocable living trust generally are not subject to the probate process when you pass away.  This can save time and money and maintain privacy.  In some states, probate can be an expensive and time consuming and it's always a public process.


Provide for children.  A trust established by your will or in advance of your death can be used as a means to manage and distribute assets for kids in a way that is in line with your wishes.  Without a trust, assets are typically distributed at the state's age of majority.  However, with a trust you could spread out the distribution of assets over decades.  A trust may also be used to protect children from a previous marriage.


Tax planning.  Trusts can be a part of your overall tax planning strategy.  This could even include trusts created to carry out some sort of charitable giving plan.


Asset protection.  Trusts can be created in a manner that affords protection of the trust assets from creditors.


Manage and distribute an IRA.  With a trusteed IRA you can preserve the tax benefits offered by an IRA, but also control the distribution and timing of the distribution of the IRA after you are gone. Trusteed IRAs are available here at USAA.


That's just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to using a trust, but it's definitely a great topic for a discussion with your estate planning attorney. Good luck!




Posted: 2014-01-23 10:34 AM


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