QTIP Trust

Annapolis, Maryland QTIP Trust Lawyer

Experienced QTIP Trust Attorney Serving Anne Arundel County, Washington D.C., and Beyond

If you have children from a past marriage, as well as children from your current marriage, it can be difficult to ensure your children are all provided for after you’re gone, especially if all of your assets are transferred to your latest surviving spouse. That’s where QTIP (Qualified Terminable Interest Property) trusts come into play. 

A QTIP trust is designed to provide financial security to your surviving spouse while ultimately preserving your assets for your designated heirs, like your children from a previous marriage. If you’re interested in establishing a QTIP trust, contact an Annapolis trust planning lawyer at The Law Office of Raymond E. Brown today.

Whether you’re looking to safeguard wealth for future generations, ensure financial security for a surviving spouse, or streamline the transfer of assets, our experienced team is here to help you achieve your estate planning goals. With our in-depth knowledge of Maryland’s trust laws and extensive experience in estate planning, you can trust that your QTIP trust will be tailored to your unique needs and circumstances. 

Secure your legacy today–call (443) 554-9944 or reach out online to schedule a consultation with us regarding your estate plan.

qualified terminable interest property

What is a QTIP Trust?

A QTIP (Qualified Terminable Interest Property) trust is an estate planning tool used to ensure that assets are distributed according to a person’s wishes. Unlike a marital trust or credit shelter trust, this specific kind of trust is typically used in cases of blended families or in situations where there are concerns about protecting a surviving spouse’s interests.

With a QTIP trust, the grantor (or the person who establishes the trust) designates certain assets that are to be held in the trust after their death. The grantor’s surviving spouse will be able to earn income from the trust principal, but they won’t actually have access to the trust’s principal. 

When the surviving spouse dies, the assets in the trust are distributed to the beneficiaries, or the people who the grantor designated as the recipients of their estate. With QTIP trusts, the beneficiaries are often the grantor’s own children with their first spouse or another spouse prior to their latest one.

A QTIP trust allows someone to provide financial support to their current spouse after their passing, while never having to compromise their biological children’s inheritance. 

Benefits of Qualified Terminable Interest Property Trusts

Like all other kinds of trusts, QTIP trusts can provide a variety of unique benefits to grantors and their family members. Some of the primary benefits of QTIP trusts include:

  • Tax Efficiency: QTIP trusts qualify for the unlimited marital deduction, meaning assets transferred into the trust are not subject to estate taxes upon the grantor’s death. This can preserve their federal estate tax exemption for when their surviving spouse passes, significantly reducing the overall tax burden on the estate and preserving more wealth for beneficiaries. 
  • Control Over Distribution: The grantor retains control over how assets are distributed after the surviving spouse’s death, ensuring that beneficiaries, typically children from a previous marriage, ultimately receive the trust assets according to the grantor’s wishes.
  • Protection for Surviving Spouse: A QTIP trust provides financial security for the surviving spouse by ensuring they receive income generated by the trust assets during their lifetime, while also safeguarding the principal for future beneficiaries.
  • Preservation of Family Wealth: By preserving assets within the trust, a QTIP trust helps maintain family wealth for future generations, protecting against potential mismanagement, creditors, or divorce.
  • Flexibility in Estate Planning: QTIP trusts offer flexibility in estate planning, allowing the grantor to provide for both the surviving spouse and other beneficiaries, such as children from a previous marriage or other family members, in a tax-efficient manner.
  • Avoids Probate: Assets held within a QTIP trust bypass the probate process, saving time, reducing administrative costs, and ensuring privacy in the distribution of assets.
  • Asset Protection: Depending on the specific provisions of the trust, a QTIP trust can offer asset protection benefits, shielding assets from potential claims by creditors or lawsuits.
  • Tailored Planning: QTIP trusts can be customized to suit individual circumstances and goals, accommodating unique family dynamics, financial situations, and estate planning objectives.

Consulting with a qualified estate planning attorney is essential to fully understand the benefits of QTIP trusts and how they can best serve your specific needs and goals.

qtip trust definition

Are QTIP Trusts Revocable?

No, QTIP (Qualified Terminable Interest Property) trusts are typically irrevocable trusts. With an irrevocable trust, once assets are transferred into a QTIP trust and the trust is established, the terms and conditions of the trust generally cannot be altered or revoked by the grantor. This ensures that the trust’s assets are protected and distributions are managed according to the grantor’s wishes. 

Is a QTIP Trust Included in the Surviving Spouse’s Estate?

Yes, assets held within a QTIP trust are included in the surviving spouse’s estate for estate tax purposes. Although the assets themselves are not subject to estate taxes upon the grantor’s death due to the marital deduction, they will be considered part of the surviving spouse’s estate when the surviving spouse passes away. This can provide significant tax advantages, especially for those with large estates. 

Who Benefits the Most From a QTIP Trust?

The primary people who benefit from a QTIP trust are typically the surviving spouse and the grantor’s designated heirs, who are often children from a previous marriage. The surviving spouse benefits from the trust’s income, providing them financial security throughout the rest of their lifetime. 

Later on, the ultimate beneficiaries, typically children or other heirs, benefit from receiving the assets within the trust, which are transferred to them with decreased estate taxes. 

qtip trust meaning

Managing and Administering QTIP Trusts

In order to properly manage and administer a QTIP trust, there are several key steps one must follow. First, they’ll need to establish the trust with the help of an estate planning attorney, who will draft the trust document outlining the trust’s terms and conditions.

The grantor, sometimes the wealthier spouse in the relationship, will then designate assets to be held in the trust for the benefit of their surviving spouse. This will usually include assets like bank accounts or investment properties, which will allow the surviving spouse to benefit from income generated by the trust during their lifetime. 

They will also designate a trustee, who will be responsible for overseeing and managing the trust upon the grantor’s death. This could be a financial institution, attorney, or trusted family member. Upon the grantor’s death, the trustee assumes control of the trust and manages the assets according to the trust’s instructions. 

When the surviving spouse dies, the trust assets and remaining assets from the marriage are distributed in accordance with the trust conditions and the couple’s wills and other estate planning documents. 

QTIP Trust Requirements

In order to establish and maintain a QTIP trust, there are a number of requirements that need to be met. In order to establish a QTIP trust:

  • The trust must be irrevocable
  • The surviving spouse must be a U.S. citizen
  • The surviving spouse must receive all of the trust income
  • The surviving spouse must receive income from the QTIP trust at least once a year
  • The grantor must appoint a trustee to manage the trust
  • The surviving spouse can request that the trustee convert the trust assets into profitable property, if the assets aren’t generating income
Maryland qtip estate planning

How to Establish QTIP Trusts in Maryland

To establish a QTIP trust in Maryland, you typically begin by consulting with an experienced estate planning attorney familiar with state laws and regulations surrounding QTIP trusts. Your attorney will assist you in drafting a trust document that meets Maryland’s specific requirements, including provisions for the surviving spouse’s income distributions and compliance with federal tax laws for the marital deduction. 

After drafting the trust document, you’ll need to fund the trust by transferring assets into it, titling in the trust’s name. Once established and funded, the trustee will manage the trust assets according to the terms outlined in the trust document, providing for the surviving spouse’s needs while preserving wealth for designated beneficiaries. 

Do You Need an Attorney to Create a QTIP Trust in Maryland?

It is highly advisable to consult with a Maryland estate planning attorney when creating a QTIP trust. An attorney can provide crucial guidance on navigating state-specific trust laws and regulations and drafting a comprehensive trust document that meets both legal and personal requirements. 

At The Law Office of Raymond E. Brown, we proudly provide married couples with dedicated legal guidance in establishing QTIP trusts in Annapolis, MD and the surrounding communities. With extensive experience in estate planning and a deep understanding of Maryland’s trust laws, Attorney Raymond E. Brown and his legal team provide clients with personalized advice and tailored estate planning solutions.

qtip trusts in Maryland

Call Annapolis Estate Planning Attorney Raymond E. Brown For Legal Assistance With Your QTIP Trust

If you’re looking to preserve your family’s wealth, contact a Maryland QTIP trust lawyer at The Law Office of Raymond E. Brown today. With years of experience in estate planning law and a deep understanding of Maryland’s trust regulations, we can guide you through the process of creating a QTIP trust that aligns with your unique needs and goals.

When you trust Attorney Brown and his team, you can rest easy knowing that your assets will be managed and distributed according to your wishes, all while minimizing estate taxes and maximizing benefits for your beneficiaries.

Start planning for your future today–call us at (443) 554-9944 or complete our online intake form to schedule an appointment with a member of our legal team.

Skip to content