In Somerset, Pennsylvania, a trust is a setup under which property is possessed by one individual or entity, to be utilized for the benefit of another.
A trust can be set up for just about any reason. One of the most prevalent reasons is to ensure that a person perpetually has enough money to avoid going broke, but not enough that they can avoid getting a job, or spend all of the money on things they don't need. This can be accomplished by drafting a trust agreement so that only permits the beneficiary to access a limited portion of the money per week, or per month.
If you are a trustee, you can permit the beneficiary to access the trust under any conditions you see fit (or make it unconditional, if you want). The point is that, if you make sure the trust agreement is well-constructed, you can help the beneficiary in any way you like, secure in the knowledge that they won't be able (or will find it very challenging) to spend it on things you don't approve of.
A trust could, of course, be much more permissive, if the creator of the trust wants it to be. You could set up a trust authorizing the beneficiary to spend as much of the money in it as they like, on anything. Of course, in such a case, the trust fund might not last very long, particularly if the beneficiary is a younger person.
What to Include in Any Somerset, PA Trust
There are 4 things that have to be present in every trust for it to be legitimate in Somerset, Pennsylvania. First, the trust must have a stated purpose. Whatever purpose you intend the trust to serve, you should make it quite clear when drafting the document.
Second, the trust must further name a trustee. The trustee is the person who is truly going to administer the trust, and has possession and control of the property while it is the subject of the trust.
The third required element to make a valid trust is the beneficiary or beneficiaries. Because a trust, by definition, is set up to benefit someone or something, that entity must be identified in the trust. Nonetheless, if the person(s) meant to benefit from the trust do not yet exist, they can still be legitimate beneficiaries, as long as they are part of an identifiable class of people, and can be easily identified if they are born. For instance, you could set up a trust to benefit your grandchildren, even if you don't truly have any grandchildren yet.
Finally, the trust needs to truly be composed of something. A trust document must name the money or property which is directly being held in trust, which is identified as the "corpus" or "body" of the trust.
Can A Somerset, Pennsylvania Trust Drafting Attorney Help?
While the elements of a valid trust are fairly simple and easy to remember, drafting a trust that is sure to be carried out according to the wishes of the person making it can still be intricate. For that reason, a good Somerset, Pennsylvania attorney experienced in estate planning and the drafting trusts may prove invaluable.