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By Randy Hughes
All you need to create a Land Trust is two documents. A Deed to Trustee and a Trust Agreement. The heart of a Land Trust is the Trust Agreement (TA). So, what do you do when you can t find your TA?
Your first phone call should be to your Trustee. She/He/It should have a copy. But, sometimes things happen and even your Trustee can’t find a copy of your TA. Your frustration mounts when you can’t locate your TA because generally you went looking for it for a reason and you need it now!
Multiple USB sticks
Why do you need your TA? Probably because you are getting ready to sell the property out of the Trust and you need to prove to a closing agent, title company or attorney that the Trust exists. Or, you need to make a change (amendment) to the TA (i.e. change of Beneficiary or change of Trustee). First, I would suggest that you learn your lesson so this never happens again. Make sure that you keep two copies of each TA in addition to the copy retained by the Trustee. Keep a hard copy in your property files filing cabinet and keep an electronic copy on a Memory Stick in your safe at home or in your safe deposit box at your bank.
Now, back to the problem. A Trust Agreement is not like a Will. By statute, Wills can be revoked by destroying it. Therefore, if no one can produce a valid Will upon the death of the testator, there is a presumption that the will was revoked. Not the case with a Land Trust Agreement. If a TA cannot be found there is no presumption that the agreement was revoked. If a photo copy cannot be found of the original TA, the Beneficiary can Restate the TA by typing up a new one! All the Beneficiary needs to do to recreate the TA is the put at the top of page one of the newly formed TA, Amended and Restated Trust Agreement. Then in the body of the TA attest to the fact that the original TA could not be found and that the Beneficiary is certifying that the is a true and accurate restatement of the original TA.
So, remember. Keep multiple copies of your TA (and any amendments) in different locations. But, if all else fails you know that you can always recreate the TA, if necessary.
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Randy Hughes, Mr. Land Trust
I encourage you to learn more by going to my FREE online training at www.landtrustwebinar.com/411 and text “reasons” to 206-203-2005 for my free booklet, Reasons to Use a Land Trust. You can also reach me the old-fashioned way by calling me at 217-355-1281. (I actually answer my own phone unlike most other businesses in America today!)