Transferring life insurance policies to your Trust

It’s usually not necessary to transfer the ownership of life insurance policies to a Trust. Instead, the focus is more often on where the proceeds go (Rather than who owns the policy). 

Typically, life insurance policies let you designate where the proceeds go by completing a Beneficiary Designation. You can have the proceeds go directly to someone (such as a spouse or child) or have the proceeds go to the Trust. One advantage of having the proceeds paid to the Trust is the proceeds would be controlled by the terms of the Trust instead of paid out directly to the beneficiaries. This can be particularly helpful if the Beneficiaries are younger children.

The decision is yours, though one common approach is to name your spouse as the Beneficiary and then name the Trust as the alternate beneficiary. Each carrier has its own Beneficiary Designation forms, so you can contact your life insurance carrier for more information and request any forms required to update your beneficiary designation.

Learn how to title Assets here and where to find your Taxpayer Identification Number here. You can also view our full Trust Funding Guide here!

This information is intended as a reference only. It is not legal advice nor intended to cover every possible situation. Please consult an attorney if you have specific questions. Some details for funding your Trust may change over time. For example, if the Trustee changes, that would likely affect how you would title assets held in the Trust.

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