How to Fix a Broken Trust through Decanting

A typical estate plan often includes the use of one or more irrevocable trusts. However, as a result of the passage of time and change in circumstances, trustees and beneficiaries are often frustrated by the constraints imposed by the trust instrument. Trust law has greatly changed over time and the terms of an existing irrevocable trust agreement may lack the flexibility necessary to adjust to unforeseeable changes in law or other circumstances. Furthermore, the terms of the trust agreement may no longer satisfy the grantor’s intent.

There are several tools that are available to practitioners to amend an irrevocable trust agreement to better fulfill the objectives of the grantor and the beneficiaries. The purpose of this outline is to highlight how the various states decanting statutes may be used to modify the terms of an irrevocable trust.

Author(s)

Mike Gordon
Director
Gordon, Fournaris & Mammarella, P.A.