Governor Rick Snyder signed legislation allowing for the practice of trust decanting, meaning assets held by an irrevocable trust may be moved into a different trust. SB 978 and 979, drafted by attorney James Spica and sponsored by Tonya Schuitmaker, and SB 980, sponsored by Rick Jones, are now PAs 483 and 485.
Trust decanting allows a trustee to modify the terms and conditions governing how trust property is held for its beneficiaries, including limiting or changing trust beneficiaries. The result is to change an otherwise irrevocable trust without the judicial process and proofs required for traditional options such as equitable deviation, modification or reformation. The trust must include a discretionary trust provision, and the trust documents themselves can disallow trust decanting.
If you need assistance with a trust or other estate planning document, contact Gallagher Law Firm attorney Craig Gerard.