If You Went to the Expense of Creating a Trust Make Sure Your Savings Bonds Are “Reissued” In the Name of Your Trust
A living trust is used to transfer assets when you die without having those assets go through the process of a legal probate. A living trust can distribute the proceeds of your estate quicker than through the will and probate process. For a living trust to be effective, your assets must be transferred to the trust with you as the trustee.
Since part of my law practice entails Trust Administration, I am seeing more and more paper Savings Bonds that are not “funded” or “reissued” before death into the name of a Trust. Even though the popularity of the U.S. Savings Bonds may have gone by the wayside, the average American household has over $1,800 in U.S. Savings Bonds.
Now re-issuance of savings bonds to a Trust must be handled “on line” through Treasury Direct located at https://www.treasurydirect.gov. If you go to this website, you will find forms you can download and complete. They even have a section dedicated to telling you what forms and documents are needed to re-issue the savings bond to a Trust. You can then take the completed, but not signed form to a bank so your signature can be certified by a certifying officer (this includes authorized employees of insured depository institutions and corporate central credit unions). This is not the same as having your signature acknowledge d by a notary public.
Ms. MacDonald’s practice is limited to Estate Planning, Probate and Trust Administration. Ms. MacDonald maintains her practice in the Santa Clarita Valley at 25115 Avenue Stanford, Suite A-209, Valencia, California. She can be reached at 661-294-6464.
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