Experienced Michigan Attorneys
Toll Free

Kalamazoo Trust Lawyers

Trust and Asset Protection in West Michigan

One tool that individuals sometimes find to be a helpful addition to their estate plan are trusts. Trusts are the building blocks of estate planning, along with wills. There are various trust options that can help you accomplish your individual planning goals. The trust documentation will spell out how assets placed in the trust, such as financial assets and properties, will be managed and distributed.

At Willis Law, we understand that the process can be complicated, but it does not have to be. Our Kalamazoo trust attorneys will take the time to answer your questions and address your unique challenges.

Our priority is to help you implement these legal documents to establish a solid foundation for your family's future.

Types of Trusts in Michigan

There are many different terms people may hear thrown around regarding trusts. Two such terms are "testamentary trust" and "living trust." The most common type of trust is the living trust, which is an agreement between the trustor and trustee. Living trusts can be revocable or irrevocable, but the flexibility of the revocable trust makes it a more popular option for most of our estate planning clients.

Testamentary trusts and living trusts are the two main broad categories for trusts. The main thing that makes these two classes of trusts different from each other is when they initially take effect.

Living Trusts: Revocable & Irrevocable

A revocable trust is one that can takes effect during your life. You can retain control over the property you place in the trust by naming yourself as the trustee. Then you name a successor trustee to take over trust administration upon your death. Sometimes, a revocable living trust is used to avoid the costs of probate. We can help you set up a revocable living trust and show you how to transfer the title of your property to it. The property then becomes unavailable for probate because it legally belongs to the trustees of the trust. This type of trust becomes irrevocable after the grantor's death being that they can no longer revoke the trust.

An irrevoable trust is one that cannot be revoked or amended by the grantor after its creation.

Testamentary Trust

In testamentary trusts, property isn't put into the trustee's control until after the person forming the trust has passed away. Thus, a testamentary trust is a trust that starts being active after the trust-former's death. Typically, testamentary trusts come about as a result of the terms of a person's will.

Which Trust Should I Choose?

When a person is thinking of having a trust included in their estate plan, one thing they may wonder is: should the trust be a living trust or a testamentary trust? The answer to this question is dependent on many things, as there are a variety of different things it can be important to consider when making this particular decision. One is what sort of timing for the trust becoming active would best serve the person's goals. Another is how other differences regarding these two classes of trusts would impact a trust's ability to achieve a person's estate planning goals. Attorneys can provide individuals who are planning on forming a trust with helpful information regarding trust type decisions and the potential impacts of such decisions.

Trust Administration: A Trustee's Responsibilities

Administering a trust is a responsibility that many people find complex and confusing. Our lawyers are here to help anyone in charge of administering a trust perform his or her duties, including:

  • Managing trust property
  • Inventorying and valuing trust assets
  • Paying creditors
  • Resolving tax-related issues
  • Preparing annual trust accounts
  • Distributing assets according to trust documents

Contact a Michigan Trust Attorney

Our Kalamazoo trust attorneys are ready to help you protect your assets. We have additional office locations in Grand Rapids and Paw Paw.

Contact us online or call (888) 461-7744 today for a FREE initial consultation to learn more.

Hear It From Our Clients 

The Opinions That Matter 
  • “Very professional and knowledgeable. Great to work with. Would highly recommend.”

    - Frank S.
  • “We’ve needed legal services in the past and had a great experience. The staff is kind and professional. Michael was a huge help with our trust – it’s a great deal of information and he was patient and ...”

    - Anonymous
  • “Thanks for excellent, professional service!”

    - Anonymous
  • “As first-time clients, we were treated great. All of our questions were answered, and we would definitely refer friends and return for other services.”

    - Brett & Julie B.
  • “The efficiency of the Willis staff and the kindness and respect shown by Mariko and her colleagues (Patty & everyone really) was exceptional - Thank you!”

    - Anonymous
/

Choosing the Right Firm Makes 
a Difference

  • EMPATHY & DEPENDABILITY

    We are considerate to exemplify good work ethics. Our lawyers strive to actively participate and engage in your feelings or ideas.

  • INTEGRITY, HONESTY, & ACCOUNTABILITY

    Willis Law adheres to a code of moral and ethical standards, is truthful in all things, and takes responsibility for our actions.

  • SERVICE TO OTHERS

    We demonstrate compassion and consideration for others, putting your needs or desires ahead of our own to treat you the way you appreciate being treated.

  • ROOTS FROM A JUDGE

    Sons of a former chief judge, Frank Willis.

Place Your Legal Concerns 
Into Our Capable Hands

  • Please enter your first name.
  • Please enter your last name.
  • Please enter your phone number.
    This isn't a valid phone number.
  • Please enter your email address.
    This isn't a valid email address.
  • Please make a selection.
  • Please enter a message.