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Maryland Living Trust Form (Revocable)

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Maryland Living Trust Form (Revocable)

Updated April 25, 2024

A Maryland living trust allows a grantor to transfer ownership of their assets to a secure entity managed by a trustee. After the grantor’s death, the trust’s assets are immediately given to designated beneficiaries, bypassing the probate process. The grantor may also elect to be their own trustee and retain full control over their assets during their lifetime.

Requirements (4)

  1. Competent: The grantor must have the capacity to create a trust.
  2. Intent: The grantor must indicate an intention to establish a trust.
  3. Definite Beneficiary: The trust must have an ascertainable beneficiary, unless it is a charitable trust or a trust for the care of an animal.
  4. Trustee’s Duties: The trustee must have duties to perform.[1]


Amending/Revoking – The grantor may revoke or amend the trust, unless the terms of the trust explicitly state that it is irrevocable.[2]

Bond Requirement – The trustee is only required to put forward a bond if a court finds that such a bond either is necessary to secure the performance of their duties or is required under the terms of the trust.[3]

Certification of Trust – A certification of trust, verifying the trust’s existence, the identities of the grantor and trustee, and whether the trust is revocable, may be given to a person other than a beneficiary instead of a copy of the trust instrument.[4]

Co-Trustees – If a trust is administered by multiple trustees and one of the co-trustees is unavailable, the remaining co-trustees may act in the unavailable trustee’s absence.[5]

Contesting a Trust – An action contesting a trust must be commenced within six months of the date that the trustee has delivered notice of the trust’s existence or within one year of the death of the grantor, whichever is earlier.[6]

Costs Related to the Trust – Only those costs that are reasonable in relation to the purposes and property of the trust may be incurred in its administration.[7]

Jurisdiction – A trust is considered valid if it was created in compliance with the laws of the jurisdiction in which it was established or in which the grantor was living at the time of creation.[8]

Oral Trusts – Oral trusts are only held to be valid if they are established by clear and convincing evidence.[9]

Pet Trusts – A trust may be created to provide for the care of one or more animals that are alive during the grantor’s lifetime. The trust terminates upon the death of the last surviving pet.[10]

Signing Requirements – There is no statutory requirement for a living trust to be signed in Maryland.

Spendthrift Provision – A provision stating that the interest of a beneficiary is subject to a “spendthrift trust,” or that uses similar language, validly restrains both the voluntary and involuntary transfer of that beneficiary’s interest.[11]

Trustee’s Compensation – A trustee whose duties include the collection and distribution of income from property, or the preservation and distribution of property, is entitled to receive commissions in exchange for their services.[12]

Trustee’s Duties – A trustee must reasonably administer a trust in accordance with its stated purposes and in the interests of the beneficiaries.[13] A trustee must also respond to requests from beneficiaries for information on the administration of the trust.[14]

Trustee’s Powers – As well as those powers enumerated in the trust instrument, the trustee is empowered to take specified steps to determine their liability for potential violations of environmental law.[15]


  1. § 14.5-402(a)
  2. § 14.5-602(a)(1)
  3. § 14.5-702(a)
  4. § 14.5-910(a)
  5. § 14.5-703(a)
  6. § 14.5-605
  7. § 14.5-805
  8. § 14.5-403
  9. § 14.5-406
  10. § 14.5-407
  11. § 14.5-504(b)
  12. § 14.5-708(a)(1)(i)
  13. § 14.5-801
  14. § 14.5-813(a)
  15. § 14.5-816