Decanting Provision

A decanting provision is a method by which a trustee may remove or modify the provisions of an irrevocable trust to distribute its assets into a new trust with different terms due to significant life or law changes. Decanting provisions are typically included in the original trust document to provide trustees with flexibility to modify or update the terms of an irrevocable trust under certain circumstances. Decanting may only occur if the trust was created in a state that allows trust decanting. 

There are several reasons to decant a trust, including but not limited to: 

  • Correct errors or ambiguities
  • Update or change trustees or beneficiaries
  • Merge or divide trusts
  • Move to a state with more favorable trust laws
  • Adjust for changes in tax laws, family situations, or financial circumstances

While this provision is typically used to decant irrevocable trusts, there are some types of trusts that are restricted from decanting including Charitable Remainder Trusts (CRTs), Marital Trusts, Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts (GRATs), and others.

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