When you are making an estate plan, the type of trust you choose for your assets can have an impact on the beneficiaries. If you have a person who is going to be the beneficiary of a trust and who is the recipient of government benefits, you should be sure that you use a special needs trust so that you can help him or her preserve his or her right to receive benefits.
A special needs trust is a fully legal option for passing down assets to a person who is getting government assistance. This type of trust provides the beneficiary with some of life's necessities without giving him or her control of the trust. Since they don't control the trust, can't dissolve the trust and aren't able to decide the frequency of the distributions, the trust won't impact their benefits.
For a person who isn't on government assistance, other trust types might be beneficial. The revocable trust is one that lets you retain control of the trust. You could modify the trust or revoke it at any point in your life.
Another type of trust that might prove useful is the irrevocable trust. Once you put assets into this type of trust, you can't chance the structure of the trust. Before you establish this type of trust, be sure that you fully understand how this will impact you and your right to the assets in the trust.
All of this is a lot to think about, and there are also other types of trusts that might be useful when you are handling your estate planning duties. Thinking about each one carefully is crucial so that you make the decisions that enable you to follow through with your wishes.
Source: FindLaw, " Types of Trusts," accessed Dec. 09, 2016