Estate Plan Trusts

Trusts

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Revocable Trust

A Revocable Trust, also known as a living trust, is a legal arrangement that allows an individual, the grantor or settlor, to transfer assets into or out of a trust during their lifetime. The grantor retains control over the trust and can make changes to it or revoke it entirely. Typically, the grantor serves as the initial trustee, designating themselves as the primary beneficiary during their lifetime. The Trust may also designate other beneficiaries. The grantor is able to transfer their assets, like real estate, bank accounts, investments, and personal property into the trust, allowing them to become trust assets. The Trust will also outline the terms of how the assets are to be managed and distributed during their lifetime and after their death.

Reasons to consider establishing a Revocable Trust in Connecticut:

Privacy and Avoidance of Probate: Revocable Trusts allow for the private and efficient transfer of wealth to beneficiaries outside the probate process, ensuring that the distribution of assets remains confidential and free from potential delays associated with the probate court.

Control and Flexibility: One of the biggest reasons for deciding to create a Revocable Trust is that individuals enjoy the freedom they have to be able to modify, amend, or revoke the trust at any time, which provides flexibility and control over their assets during their lifetime.

Incapacity Planning: A Revocable Trust allows you to include provisions for the management of assets in case the grantor becomes incapacitated. This ensures a seamless transition of control.

Complex Asset Portfolios: Those with complex assets, such as real estate in multiple states, investment portfolios, or business interests can benefit from centralized management within the trust. With a Revocable Trust, if you have out of state property, you are able to avoid probate in other states.

Tax Treatment: In relation to tax purposes, a Revocable trust is generally considered a pass-through entity. Income earned by the trust is reported on the grantor’s individual tax return.

A Revocable Trust can be extremely beneficial for people with certain wishes and goals, however, a Revocable Trust differs from an Irrevocable trust in that it is typically not used to avoid probate. If you have questions about which type of trust is right for you and your estate plan, schedule a consultation with our Estate Planning team today.

Irrevocable Trust

An Irrevocable Trust is a document that cannot be altered, amended, or revoked by the grantor once it is established without the consent of the beneficiaries. The document must outline the terms of the trust, including the beneficiaries, distribution rules, and other provisions.

An Irrevocable Trust is beneficial in that it can provide asset protection from creditors, taxes and probate court. However, it must be known that this trust cannot be changed in any way once it is established, without the consent of all beneficiaries. This differs from a Revocable Trust, which allows you to continue to alter it or revoke it during your lifetime.

Reasons to consider establishing an Irrevocable Trust in Connecticut:

Asset Protection: Irrevocable Trusts provide a strong level of asset protection. Assets that are placed in the trust can be shielded from the grantor’s creditors and legal claims. This is very important for individuals who are looking to safeguard their wealth from potential lawsuits or financial difficulties.

Estate Tax Planning: Assets that are transferred into these trusts are generally removed from the grantor’s taxable estate, which would reduce the potential for estate tax liability.

Medicaid Planning: Transferring assets into an Irrevocable Trust allows individuals to reduce their countable assets, which would potentially make them eligible for Medicaid benefits to cover long-term care expenses.

Control Over Distribution: The grantor of the trust can specify how assets are to be distributed to the beneficiaries and at what time. The terms can be made specific to the grantors’ wishes, whether that be to distribute assets when a beneficiary turns a specific age or for specific reasons such as education, for the purchase of a home, or other significant life events.

If you have questions about which type of trust is right for you and your estate plan, schedule a consultation with our Estate Planning team today.

Testamentary Trust

A Testamentary Trust is typically created within a person’s last will and testament, and only becomes effective upon the death of the testator. The Trust assigns a trustee or trustees who will be responsible for administering the trust and its terms to carry out the wishes of the testator and act in the best interest of the beneficiaries. The terms and conditions of the trust are outlined in the will, providing instructions on how the assets should be distributed and managed.

Testamentary Trusts can provide orderly distributions of assets, which can be especially useful when there are challenging family or financial situations. They can be utilized to protect assets for minor children or individuals who may not be capable of managing their inheritances independently. Testamentary trusts are usually utilized to minimize estate taxes and provide ongoing financial support to beneficiaries.

It is important to note that Testamentary Trusts are only activated once the probate process is complete, which can potentially lead to delays in asset distribution. Additionally, the costs associated with probate, such as court fees and legal expenses can be higher than those associated with living trusts. If you have questions about which type of trust is right for you and your estate plan, schedule a consultation with our Estate Planning team today.

QTIP Trust

A QTIP Trust refers to a Qualified Terminable Interest Property Trust. It is a type of irrevocable trust that allows a surviving spouse to receive income from the trust, while preserving the ultimate distribution of trust assets to other beneficiaries, which are typically children or heirs designated by the grantor.

Reasons to consider establishing a QTIP Trust in Connecticut:

Providing for a Surviving Spouse: The primary function of a QTIP Trust is to ensure ongoing financial support for a surviving spouse while also preserving the ultimate distribution of those assets to other beneficiaries.

Control Over Ultimate Distribution: This Trust gives the grantor control over the ultimate distribution of the remaining assets after the surviving spouse’s death. This way, the spouse can receive their benefits while they are living, and the grantor can also control the division of assets after the death of the surviving spouse. This works especially well for those involved in blended families, where individuals may have children from previous marriages. It allows the grantor to provide for the current spouse while also ensuring that the assets ultimately pass to children.

Marital Deduction for Estate Tax Planning: Assets transferred to the QTIP Trust qualify for the marital deduction, which means that they are not subject to the estate tax upon death of the first spouse. This enables the deferral of estate taxes until the death of the surviving spouse.

Creditor Protection: Assets held within a QTIP Trust may be protected from the policy owner’s creditors, depending on the specific legal framework of the trust and state laws. This protection can be particularly valuable in scenarios where the insured individual faces potential creditor claims.

A QTIP Trust can be very useful for those who have complex family dynamics and specific estate planning goals. It can be advantageous for avoiding estate taxing upon the death of the first spouse. It also provides a level of protection from creditors. If you have questions about whether a QTIP Trust is right for you and your estate plan, schedule a consultation with our Estate Planning team today.

ILIT

An ILIT refers to an Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust and is specifically designed to own life insurance policies. It allows individuals to exclude life insurance proceeds from their taxable estate, thereby reducing potential estate taxes upon their death. ILITs can be particularly advantageous for individuals with significant assets and those who anticipate their estates might be subject to Connecticut Estate Taxes. As of 2023, Estates with a value over $12.92 million are subject to Connecticut Estate Tax.

Reasons to consider establishing a ILIT in Connecticut:

Estate Tax Reduction: One of the primary reasons for setting up an ILIT is to reduce the size of an individual’s taxable estate. Life insurance proceeds owned by the ILIT are generally not included in the insured individual’s estate, which can reduce the overall estate tax burden.

Creditor Protection: Assets held within an ILIT may be protected from the policy owner’s creditors, depending on the specific legal framework of the trust and state laws. This protection can be particularly valuable in scenarios where the insured individual faces potential creditor claims.

Control Over Distribution: Through an ILIT, the insured can specify how the insurance proceeds will be distributed to the beneficiaries, ensuring that the funds are used for specific purposes, such as providing income for a surviving spouse, paying off debts, or funding a child’s education.

Privacy and Avoidance of Probate: ILITs allow for the private and efficient transfer of wealth to beneficiaries outside the probate process, ensuring that the distribution of assets remains confidential and free from potential delays associated with the probate court.

Other types of trusts, such as revocable living trusts or testamentary trusts, serve different purposes, such as asset management during the grantor’s lifetime or the distribution of assets after the grantor’s death, but they may not have the same focus on reducing estate taxes through life insurance. If you have questions about which type of trust is right for you and your estate plan, schedule a consultation with our Estate Planning team today.

DAPT

A Domestic Asset Protection Trust, or DAPT, is a type of irrevocable trust that allows an individual to protect their assets from creditors, lawsuits, and other potential financial threats. DAPTs are used to shield assets from potential future creditors while still allowing the grantor to benefit from the assets. This type of trust is particularly beneficial for individuals seeking to protect their wealth for future generations, as well as those who may be at risk for lawsuits, like business owners or certain types of professionals.

Reasons to consider establishing a DAPT in Connecticut:

Creditor Protection: The primary purpose of a DAPT is to shield assets from creditors. By placing assets in the trust, a grantor can protect them from potential future lawsuits, claims, or creditors seeking to collect debts.

Estate Planning: DAPTs can be an essential component of your estate planning strategy. By transferring assets into the trust, the grantor can ensure that their assets are passed on to their chosen beneficiaries while protecting them from potential creditors and legal liabilities.

Tax Benefits: Depending on the specific circumstances and the type of assets transferred, a DAPT may offer potential tax benefits. While our experienced attorneys can guide you on this, it is crucial to consult with a financial advisor or tax professional to understand the specific tax implications of setting up a DAPT.

Flexibility and Control: While DAPTs are irrevocable trusts, some flexibility can be built into the trust structure, allowing the grantor to retain some control over the assets and how they are managed within the trust.

Asset Management: DAPTs often involve the appointment of a trustee who manages the assets in the trust. This can be beneficial for individuals looking to have a professional oversee their assets and ensure their effective management and distribution.

It’s important to understand that DAPTs are specifically designed to offer asset protection from future creditors, which distinguishes them from other trusts. In comparison, a revocable living trust does not provide the same level of creditor protection as the assets in such trusts can typically be reached by creditors. If you have questions about which type of trust is right for you and your estate plan, schedule a consultation with our Estate Planning team today.

Let Us Fight For You!

Meet The Team

A Law Group That Fights For You

attorney Trevor Doyon Doyon & White Law Group

Trevor Doyon

Partner

Attorney Patrick White Doyon & White Law Group

Patrick White

Partner

Ashley Davis paralegal Doyon & White Law Group

Ashley Davis

Paralegal

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Linda Baker

Paralegal

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FAQ's

Frequently Asked Questions

How Much Do Your Legal Services Cost?

Attorney’s fees vary by case. For wrongful death and catastrophic injury cases we are able to represent clients on a contingency basis, this means you don’t pay anything up front, and only owe a fee when we win you compensation.

For non-contingency matters, such as business disputes and most probate litigation, we are retained on an hourly basis.

All attorney’s fees and costs will be reviewed with you prior to any agreement between you and our firm, at Doyon & White Law Group, we pride ourselves on having transparent conversations aimed at creating reasonable fee agreements.

Can you tell me whether I have a strong case without having to spend a lot of Money?

A complimentary consultation is the first step in our process. We want to meet you and you want to meet us to make sure we are collectively the right fit for your serious matter. The initial consultation is for you to tell us about your case, whether it’s a probate matter or the sudden death of a loved one that you believe is the fault of another. After discussing the details, we will advise you on if we believe we can successfully represent your interests. At this time we will review the expected time lines and potential recovery uniquely associated with your matter.

How Long Will It Take To Get To The End Of The Legal Process?

The length of time required to see your case through to completion varies by case. During your initial consultation, we will review the expected time lines and potential recovery uniquely associated with your matter.

How soon after an incident do I need to hire an attorney?

Usually, there is a statute of limitations on bringing a claim. This means you have a limited amount of time to notify the other party of your claim for damages and filing with the appropriate courts. For most wrongful death and catastrophic injury claims, you have less than two years from the date of loss to file a lawsuit in Connecticut. It is therefore advisable to speak with an attorney as soon as you become aware of a potential issue, from there we can help you formulate a plan of action.

How often will you update me on the status of my case?

At Doyon & White Law Group we are prompt to respond to client inquiries and ahead of the curve in conveying case updates. Our attorneys will keep you updated on progress, reach out to you with questions, and advise you on next steps along the way. If you need reassurance or are unsure about a notice or mail you receive, we welcome a call anytime and offer same day in person appointments when available.

What are my responsibilities as a client?

To best represent your interests, it is important that you remain actively engaged with us and keep us updated on any new case-related information throughout the process. It’s important that our clients make themselves available for court hearings and depositions. At Doyon & White Law Group our goal is to take away the stress and ambiguity associated with your fight for justice. We pride ourselves on being beside you to guide you every step of the way.

Linda Baker

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Linda is the seasoned probate paralegal working together with clients helping them through probate administration following the loss of a loved one. Joining the team in 2023, she has brought 25+ years of legal experience to the firm with extensive proficiency in all administrative tasks, Probate Court knowledge, complex document preparation, and case management. Linda works exceedingly well the court’s staff and cultivates close relationships with new and existing clientele.

Linda is a long-time resident of the area and loves going for walks on the beach before work. She enjoys spending time with her husband, Ken, and their three grown children. She enjoys road trips, is an avid reader, collector of sea glass and is an amateur artist. 

Ashley Davis

Ashley Davis paralegal Doyon & White Law Group

Ashley is the paralegal working directly with our attorneys and our clients. The attorneys at Doyon & White are grateful that our clients feel comfortable reaching out to Ashley for status updates or quick questions when the attorneys are unavailable. Ashley has a background in customer service with 10 years in the hotel industry and enjoys the client relation aspect of her job the most. Ashley is intimately familiar with the details of our client’s cases, processes and reviews all medical records, and communicates with attorneys and insurance adjusters.

Ashley moved to Branford, Conn from Northern California in 2018 and hasn’t looked back since. She enjoys the four seasons New England offers by playing golf and tennis in the summer and looks forward to snow days and skiing in the winter.

Trevor Doyon, Esq.

attorney Trevor Doyon Doyon & White Law Group

Attorney Doyon was born and raised in the hills of Northwest Connecticut. Trevor began his legal career serving as the clerk for several Superior Court Judges, many of whom are now members of the Connecticut Supreme and Appellate Courts.

Before forming Doyon & White Law Group, Trevor was the Managing Partner of a successful mid-size law-firm’s Litigation Department.  Trevor has favorably authored and argued hundreds of motions and hearings in every Judicial District of Connecticut, in addition to winning numerous contested arbitrations and jury trial verdicts. Attorney Doyon is known and respected for his determined approach to unique and difficult legal issues by clients and judges alike.

Trevor has been honored as a Super Lawyer’s Rising Star for 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022, a selection made by colleagues and peers and reserved for less than five percent of lawyers in Connecticut. Attorney Doyon has also been nominated to the “National Trial Lawyer’s Top 100” list, was recognized by the American Institute for Lawyers as “Top 10 for Client Satisfaction,” and has been a featured guest speaker at Yale University’s Trial Law Camp.

When he’s not in Court, Trevor enjoys spending time with his wife Becky, their two daughters and their Great Dane “Gronk,” in addition to supporting anything UConn sports and coaching Connecticut’s only national level Sled Hockey team.

Patrick White, Esq.

Attorney Patrick White Doyon & White Law Group

Attorney White was born and raised in New Haven, Connecticut. After graduation from Fordham University, he worked in commercial finance in New York City before attending Quinnipiac University School of Law. Upon graduation he served as a clerk in the Superior Court in both the criminal and civil divisions.

Prior to forming Doyon & White Law Group, Attorney White practiced at a mid-size firm in Hamden, Connecticut where he mainly handled criminal defense, habeas cases, and civil litigation matters. Attorney White’s experience arguing before jury trials and court trials has led to winning favorable results for his clients on many occasions. Attorney White’s civil litigation experience includes personal injury representation, business litigation, and insurance coverage disputes.

Attorney White is a thoughtful and diligent advocate for all his clients and is respected for the rapport he builds and compassion he conveys.

Attorney White is a member of the New Haven County Bar Association and previously served as the President of the New Haven Young Lawyers Association.

Still a proud New Haven resident, Attorney White enjoys spending time in the city with his wife Sara, their two young children, and their pit bull, Ghost. He’s an avid UConn basketball fan and New York Yankees fan.