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Having a well-detailed estate plan can help manage your assets and prepare you for life's uncertainties. Trusts are important estate planning tools that can help protect you in the event of sudden incapacitation. By creating a living trust, you can help your assets and loved ones bypass the expensive and laborious probate process and keep your final affairs private following your passing.

If you are thinking about drawing up a trust or want to understand how estate planning works, consulting with an experienced Texas estate planning attorney is imperative for proper guidance. I have the diligence and knowledge to guide and advise clients in the legal matters of estate planning, including wills and trusts.

As your legal counsel, I can enlighten you about the benefits and types of trusts, as well as the assets that can be kept in the trust. Also, I can guide you through the process of creating a trust and help you choose a reliable trustee. My firm – Russell Manning Attorney at Law – proudly serves clients across Corpus Christi, Texas, including Bee County, Nueces County, South Texas, and the Coastal Bend area.



Overview of Trusts

A trust is a fiduciary arrangement whereby a person (the grantor or trustor) gives another person (a trustee or successor trustee) the legal right and authority to manage their assets upon their death or sudden incapacitation on behalf of their beneficiaries. Assets, property, and money placed in a trust are referred to as trust assets. The trustee will manage and distribute trust assets to beneficiaries in accordance with the provisions of the trust documents.

Types of Trusts

The most common types of trusts in Texas include:

Testamentary Trust

A testamentary trust is a trust created and funded under the terms of the trustor's last will and testament. This trust only exists following the trustor's death. Assets placed in a testamentary trust must pass through the probate process.

Living Trust

A living trust is a trust that is created and funded while the grantor is alive. A living trust may be "revocable" or "irrevocable." Assets placed in a living trust will bypass the probate process.

Revocable Trust

A revocable trust is a trust that can be terminated, amended, or revoked by the trustor at any time. The trustor will maintain complete control over the trust while they're alive.

Irrevocable Trust

An irrevocable trust is a trust that cannot be amended, modified, or revoked by the trustor. Once the irrevocable trust is funded, the trustor will relinquish control over it. Assets placed in an irrevocable trust are exempted from estate taxes.

Crummey Trust 

A Crummey trust is a trust that can be used to make gifts of assets to minor children gradually over a specified period. With a Crummey trust, the grantor can place limitations on when or what the beneficiary can have access to the trust assets and funds.

An experienced attorney can determine which type of trust is right for you and your family's needs and enlighten you about the process of creating a trust.

Process of Creating a Trust

Here are the steps involved in creating a trust:

  • Decide the type of trust you want to create.

  • Identify the assets and property you want to place in the trust.

  • Choose a trustee or successor trustee to manage trust assets.

  • Decide the beneficiaries of the trust assets.

  • Draft the trust document with the assistance of an experienced lawyer.

  • Sign the trust document in front of a notary public.

  • Change the title of trust assets with a title document.

  • Fund the trust.

However, for a trust to be legal and valid in Texas, you must follow all procedural requirements when creating and funding it. An experienced estate planning attorney can enlighten you about the benefits of a trust and walk you through every legal step involved in creating a valid trust.

Why Having a Trust Is Important

Having a trust is important because it can help you achieve the following:

  • Bypass the court-supervised probate process and maintain privacy.

  • Maintain control over who receives certain assets or property.

  • Store away assets and resources for minor children until a future date.

  • Protects assets from creditors and frivolous lawsuits.

  • Manage and control investments and spending for beneficiaries.

  • Protect beneficiaries from poor judgment and waste.

  • Choose a trustee or successor trustee who will help manage the trust assets.

  • Manage business assets properly to facilitate business succession.

  • Protect yourself in the case of mental incapacitation.

  • Reduce or avoid estate taxes and income taxes.

An experienced trust attorney can help draft your trust documents and navigate important decisions in your estate planning.

How an Experienced Estate
Planning Attorney Can Help

Preparing for an uncertain future can never be too early. Should you become unavailable, incapacitated, disabled, or otherwise unable to voice your opinion, your surviving family members can achieve peace of mind and benefit from knowing your exact wishes. An experienced estate planning attorney can explore your available options and determine the ideal estate plan for your unique needs.

At Russell Manning Attorney at Law, I have devoted my career to providing outstanding legal services and reliable advocacy to clients in estate planning-related matters. As your legal counsel, I can help you understand your different estate planning options and determine whether you and your loved ones can benefit from establishing a trust.

Additionally, I will guide you through every step involved in creating the trust, help draft your trust documents, and ensure that you choose a reliable person as your successor trustee. Above all, I will make sure your trust is created and funded in accordance with required legal and procedural requirements.


If you need assistance when drafting a living trust, contact my firm – Russell Manning Attorney at Law – today to schedule a simple consultation. I can offer you the personalized legal counsel and brilliant advocacy you need to make intelligent decisions when drafting your estate plan. My firm is proud to serve clients across Corpus Christi, Texas, including Bee County, Nueces County, South Texas, and the Coastal Bend area.