Revocable Trusts at Laird Norton Wealth Management: Our Commitment to You

LNWM | Trusts and Estates | April 12, 2019

***I own property or other assets in different states, and do not want go through the probate process in each state.
***I want the assets I own to remain private, even though I want to continue managing them.
***I want to specify who controls my assets if I become disabled.
***I want a trust that I can change or cancel at any time.

For the above reasons (and many others), high-net-worth families often transfer ownership of certain assets to a revocable trust. Revocable trusts are a powerful estate planning tool that we help our clients use as effectively as possible. We advise clients on which assets are best placed in a revocable trust and when, and also act as trustee for the trust once established. As a corporate trustee for more than 50 years, Laird Norton Wealth Management has the in-house expertise and extensive policies and procedures in place to manage a revocable trust at the highest level of care and professionalism. The duties LNWM undertakes managing revocable trusts are extensive and multi-faceted:

Legal title. As trustee of your revocable trust, LNWM will have legal title to the assets within the trust. Having legal title allows LNWM to handle all the transactions required to manage and oversee the assets within the trust as the owner. As a trustee, and thereby a fiduciary, we are held to the highest standard of care in all our actions. Over time, your revocable trust may contain not just financial assets (such as stocks and bonds), but also real estate, collectibles and shares of a business or partnership interests, some of which could be located in different states or even outside the US. This adds to the level of complexity and responsibility in terms of oversight and tax reporting.

Trust administration. As custodian of the assets within your trust, we collect income, oversee expenses including bill pay, conduct principal and income accounting, tax reporting, and prepare all trust-related regulatory documents. In all the work we do for your trust, we abide by the highest fiduciary standards. We are subject to examination by the Washington State Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) approximately every 18 months

Investment management. We invest the financial assets within your trust according to an Investment Policy Statement (IPS) developed explicitly for the trust. Your trust’s IPS reflects a specific level of targeted investment risk and return based on the intended longevity of the trust, desired distribution levels, your other sources of income and investments, as well as your wishes and concerns as grantor of the trust.

Estate planning. We strategize with you about how your revocable trust can be part of an integrated estate planning strategy. Our in-house experts on estate planning advise on how other types of trusts and strategies can be used alongside your revocable trust to optimize control, creditor protection, privacy, tax-efficiency and the creation of a legacy that can last for many generations. Just as important: should you become incapacitated for any reason, we are able to step in and manage your trust so that it continues to serve your needs.

Facilitation of transfers. We advise you on optimal ways to transfer assets to and from your revocable trust, allowing you to maximize tax-efficiency and expediency, while supporting the people and causes you care about during your lifetime and beyond.

Client access and reporting. Through our private client portal, you have instant online access to trust financials at all times, including distributions, tax documents, asset allocation reports and more.