Irrevocable Trusts in Florida Estate Planning
An Irrevocable Trust is one of the most powerful tools available for protecting your hard earned assets. As an important part of many Florida estate plans, an Irrevocable Trust is a valuable asset protection tool in planning for government benefits such as Medicaid & Veterans Benefits.
Because they are irrevocable, these Trusts generally cannot be modified or terminated once they have been established.
As the Grantor, when you transfer your assets into the Trust, you give up your rights of ownership to the assets. The Trust becomes a written agreement between you and the Trustee—the person you name to manage the assets in the Trust.
Benefits of an Irrevocable Trust
Irrevocable Trusts in Florida can be customized and written to accomplish a wide variety of objectives and goals, including:
- Allow a disabled person to have an unlimited amount of assets held in a Special Needs Trust for his or her benefit, without inhibiting qualification for certain governmental benefits
- Avoid guardianship in the event you become physically or cognitively impaired, and are unable to make decisions for yourself in the future
- Pass your assets to beneficiaries without requiring probate
- Provide for children for a specific purpose
- Make a gift of your property to the Trust’s beneficiaries
- Protect your assets from creditors’ claims
- Charitable estate planning
- Estate tax shelters
Protect Your Assets against Nursing Home and Long Term Care Costs
Most Floridians do not have enough assets to pay for the skyrocketing cost of long term care, or do not own long term care insurance. A properly written Irrevocable Trust is a very effective way to preserve your money, investments and other assets from “Medicaid spend down.” The assets are not available to be used for paying nursing home or assisted living expenses, because the Grantor of the Trust does not have access to or control of the assets.
So, unlike the Revocable Trust, an Irrevocable Trust in Florida complies with all federal and state Medicaid eligibility requirements. It is a sound, legal strategy that protects many of your hard-earned assets from being wiped out by the costs associated with nursing home care, while ensuring you can obtain the financial help you need from Medicaid.
The Language of the Irrevocable Trust Agreement is Critical
Because it is irrevocable, the Trust must be properly written with exact language for the purposes to be served the first time around. Thoughtful planning and careful drafting is necessary to legally ensure your specific benefits and goals are met.
As an experienced Elder Law Attorney, I can help you analyze your greatest concerns, and draft your estate plan to ensure your family’s financial future is safely guarded.
To understand whether a Florida Irrevocable Trust is appropriate for you, please contact my office to schedule a time to discuss these issues further.