Both Married and Unmarried Couples Can Have Trusts

People tend to think that you have to be married in order to have a trust. However, unmarried couples should also have living trusts. 

For married couples, a basic joint living trust is common and will meet all their needs. Both spouses will have control over the whole trust and can revoke the trust at any time. Each person will be a grantor and a trustee of the joint trust. Each person can also decide who will be a beneficiary of their share of the community owned property, and for his or her separate property as well.

However, both married and unmarried couples can create individual trusts. Individual trusts are useful if one spouse or both have a lot of separate property…or if one spouse just wants full control of their own property. Recently married couples can keep their individual trusts in order to maintain their previously acquired separate property.

Do note, however, that jointly owned assets are not very well suited in individual trusts. Spouses who co-own real property will have to record two deeds to transfer half-ownership of their interest into their separate trusts.  

Brian Chew, the managing partner of OC Wills & Trust Attorneys, has extensive experience in the areas of estate planning, asset protection planning, business succession planning, long-term care planning, and veterans’ benefits. By devoting his practice to estate planning matters, he has founded a firm that strives to provide exceptional service to their clients by working closely with individuals and their families to create comprehensive and customized estate plans. For the past twenty five years, Brian has served thousands of clients in the matters of estate planning, wills and trusts. If you have any questions about this article, you can reach Brian Chew here.