Among the factors to consider when creating an estate plan are the citizenship of the beneficiaries and trustees in Palm City. Immigration status can affect the taxation of benefits as well as the treatment of trusts. It is wise to consult an experienced estate planning lawyer before establishing any trust, but especially in cases where a trustee or beneficiary is not a U.S. citizen.
A trust is an entity that holds property and pays taxes on income earned by that property. A will can create a trust, or the trust can be created during the life of the client/grantor.
The trust owns property transferred into it by the grantor during life (or after death if the trust is established by a will). The person who manages the assets of the trust is known as the trustee. The trustee must manage the property in the trust for the good of those who will receive the property, who are known as the beneficiaries.
The document establishing the trust may order the trustee to distribute amounts periodically to beneficiaries or the trustee may be instructed to hold the property until a certain event occurs before making any distributions. The citizenship of beneficiaries and trustees in Martin County estate planning generally has significant bearing when it comes to distributions.
If someone who is not a U.S. citizen is the trustee, the citizenship issue will generally not affect the creation of the trust, but it could affect the administration. The designation of a non-citizen as trustee can cause the trust to be treated as a “foreign trust” under U.S. tax law.
For a domestic trust, a U.S. court must be able to exercise jurisdiction over the trust and a U.S. individual must be able to control all substantial decisions relating to the trust. Therefore, if a non-citizen outside the U.S. has the power to make decisions over any major type of trust action, the trust may be treated as a foreign trust subject to additional taxation and filing requirements. Citizenship of trustees in Palm City estate planning can consequently have significant tax implications.
When establishing a trust, it is important for the person creating the trust (the “grantor”) to know whether one or more beneficiaries is a non-U.S. citizen. This is important because the citizenship of beneficiaries could affect the tax consequences, particularly if that non-citizen beneficiary is a spouse.
Making distributions to a non-U.S. citizen can complicate the process, depending on the country of the beneficiary’s citizenship. It can additionally increase expenses for the administration of the trust. Therefore, it is important to work with an experienced attorney who can assist in making the process as smooth as possible.
The citizenship of beneficiaries and trustees in Palm City estate planning could affect several tax and other financial aspects of the trust. It is advisable to consult an estate planning attorney familiar with the implications of non-citizen beneficiaries and trustees. To speak with an attorney about your situation, call us today.