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Missouri Living Trust Form (Revocable)

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Missouri Living Trust Form (Revocable)

Updated May 02, 2024

A Missouri living trust is a legal document used to make arrangements for how an individual’s assets are to be distributed to their beneficiaries if they die. This individual, the grantor, may also serve as the administrator, or trustee, of their own trust. A living trust allows the grantor to amend or revoke the terms of the trust during their lifetime.

Requirements (5)

  1. Competent: The grantor must be capable of establishing a trust.
  2. Intent: The grantor must indicate the intention to create a trust.
  3. Definite Beneficiary: Unless it is a trust for the care of an animal or a charitable trust, the trust must have a definite beneficiary.
  4. Trustee’s Duties: The trustee must have duties to perform.
  5. Sole Trustee Cannot be the Sole Beneficiary: The same person must not be both the sole trustee and the sole beneficiary of the trust.[1]

Laws

Amending/Revoking – Unless the terms of a trust state that it is irrevocable, the trust can be amended or revoked by the grantor.[3]

Bond Requirement – The trustee must only put forward a bond if this is a requirement under the terms of the trust or if they have been ordered to do so by the court.[4]

Certification of Trust – The trustee may furnish a signed certification of trust instead of a copy of the trust instrument when dealing with a person who is not a beneficiary. Specific information about the trust must be included in the certificate.[5]

Co-Trustees – Co-trustees must act by majority decision.[6] If a co-trustee is incapacitated or otherwise absent, the remaining co-trustees may continue to act on behalf of the trust.[7]

Contesting a Trust – A person may initiate a judicial proceeding to contest the validity of the trust within six months of having received notice from the trustee of the trust’s existence or within two years of the grantor’s death, whichever is earlier.[8]

Costs Related to the Trust – The trustee may only incur reasonable costs in administering the trust. Whether costs are reasonable is determined by the trust property, its purposes, and the relative skills of the trustee.[9]

Jurisdiction – If a trust’s creation complies with the laws of the jurisdiction in which the instrument was executed, or that in which the grantor was living at the time of its creation, the trust is considered valid in the state of Missouri.[10]

Oral Trusts – Only clear and convincing evidence may be used to establish an oral trust and its terms.[11]

Pet Trusts – A trust can be established to care for an animal or animals alive during the grantor’s lifetime. The trust terminates upon the death of the last surviving animal for whose care the trust provided.[12]

Signing Requirements – A trust of “lands, tenements or hereditaments” must be declared in writing and signed by the grantor.[13]

Spendthrift Provision – A spendthrift provision is valid if it restrains the voluntary and/or involuntary transfer of the interest of a beneficiary.[14]

Trustee’s Compensation – If the terms of the trust do not specify the trustee’s compensation, they are entitled to compensation that is reasonable under the circumstances.[15]

Trustee’s Duties – The trustee has a duty to administer a trust in good faith, in accordance with its terms and purposes, and in the sole interest of the beneficiaries.[16]

Trustee’s Powers – In addition to the powers granted them by the terms of the trust, the trustee is empowered to collect, acquire, sell, exchange, partition, or otherwise change the character of trust property.[17]

Sources

  1. § 456.4-402(1)
  2. § 456.029
  3. § 456.6-602(1)
  4. § 456.7-702(1)
  5. § 456.10-1013(1)
  6. § 456.7-703(1)
  7. § 456.7-703(2)
  8. § 456.6-604(1)
  9. § 456.8-805
  10. § 456.4-403
  11. § 456.4-407(1)
  12. § 456.4-408(1)
  13. § 456.4-407(2)
  14. § 456.5-502(1)
  15. § 456.7-708(1)
  16. § 456.8-801
  17. § 456.8-816