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Understand what trusts can be used for asset protection

Published March 23, 2009

A trusts can be used for asset protection, but it must be the right type of trust. A living trust may not shield your assets because it is revocable. That is, you can change the terms at any time. Courts have held that since you have access to your revocable trust, creditors should be able to have access, too.

In order to use a trust for asset protection, the trust must be irrevocable. Since you cannot change the terms of an irrevocable trust, courts have held that those assets no longer belong to you and can therefore not be touched by debt collectors or other judgments against you.

Types of irrevocable asset protection trusts include spendthrift trusts, discretionary trusts, personal and self-settled trusts, an asset protection trusts. Putting your money and property into the right kind of trust protects you and your assets.

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