Estate Planning Glossary of Terms

A person designated to receive income or assets in a will or trust.

Estate Planning:
Orderly arrangement of assets and a plan for conveying them to heirs and others in a manner calculated to minimize taxes, expenses and delays.

The person who establishes a trust.  Also called a Settlor.

Gross Estate:
Total dollar value of all one’s property for estate tax purposes.

A person who is legally responsible for managing the affairs and the care of a minor or incompetent person.

Dying without a will.

When applied to a trust indicates, it cannot be changed or canceled.

Marital Deduction:
A federal estate tax deduction for property received by the deceased’s spouse.

Probate Court:
A specialized court in each state set up to handle the management of wills, estates of persons dying without a will, and other functions, such as guardianships.

Taxable Estate:
Gross estate less deductions such as marital and charitable deductions, debts and administrative expenses.

Person or institution empowered to manage trust property according to instructions contained in the trust agreement.

Basic Document for transferring property to successors through probate court.

Trust is always earned. Never given.