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Forgotten Assets Commonly Omitted from Trust funding

Having been an estate planning attorney for over 20 years I have come up with a short list of the forgotten assets that are most commonly omitted from trust funding.  That is, these assets are frequently found after death titled in individual name rather than the trust. In some cases they can be cleared up  by small estate affidavit, under $150,000 probate successions, Heggstad petitions and in some cases full probates.  However, it's important to realize that in any of the above examples there are unnecessary attorney fees being spent. Our job is to help you avoid that unnecessary fees!  So, without further adieu, here are some assets we commonly find after death having been omitted (accidentally for the most part) from trusts. LOANS - By far the most commonly omitte
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Funding a bank account “in” to a California revocable living family trust

For 20 years I have been telling people how to "put" their bank accounts and other assets into their trusts.  Some things, like real estate, are pretty easy. We just prepare a deed, our client signs it, and we send it in for recording.  Clients who work with full service financial professionals also have it easy as the staff at those financial companies tend to be well trained at trust funding. We usually start with a letter to the financial institution. If that doesn't do the trick then we always advise our clients to go into the branch if that's possible. Some things are just best done in person though.  I have not put a new asset into to my wife and my trust in some years.  We have had a trust for about 15 years, banked at the same credit union throughout, and never put our main ba
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Bank of America mortgage trust certification form

For some time now I have advised clients to contact their mortgage holder to see about linking their trust to their mortgage. Without that you can leave your trustee with a problem. The house might be owned by the trust but the mortgage is not connected to the trust. When that happens the trustee can have a very difficult (if not impossible) time getting information about the mortgage.  This is a great service that Bank of America is offering and I encourage you to see if your mortgage bank has similar.  The only downside is that they are charging $100 to process the form. Here’s that form: Borrower Trust Information and Certification Form Borrower: Loan #: Property Address: Name of Trust: Date of Trust: Grantor: Beneficiaries during Grantor’s Lifetime: Term of Trust: Occupants of a
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Title your assets with precision

INTRODUCTION An estate planning attorney should be precise in their work. At times clients think we are over the top at our office when we re-do something. We explain there is a reason.  If something is done the tiniest bit wrong it could be a HUGE problem later on. TODAY’S PROBLEM Today I am helping a client after his dad died. I will not use the real names but let’s say the guy that died was named John C. Dough.  The trust full and formal name is: John C. Dough, Trustee of the John C. Dough Trust, Dated 5/5/85 He bought a new house some years ago and the title company prepared the deed. I have to say I am amazed how often title companies mess up deeds. The title company prepared the deed as: John C. Dough, Trustees of the John C.
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