A trust amendment is used to make changes to an existing living trust. This document is the best way to make small changes to a previously executed living trust rather than creating a new one.
What Is a Trust Amendment?
A trust amendment form is a legal document that changes one or more provisions of your living trust. This saves you the hassle of creating a new living trust, which would involve transferring all the assets from your existing trust into the new trust. The living trust amendment form gives you the power to make these minor changes without too much time or effort.
Keep in mind, a trust amendment form can only be used to amend a revocable living trust. They may not be used for irrevocable living trusts because an irrevocable trust can’t be altered or revoked by the grantor without the permission of the beneficiaries.
When Should You Amend Your Living Trust?
You can amend your living trust whenever you need to adjust the provisions of your trust. Many people amend their trusts due to changes in circumstance such as the birth of a child, change in marital status, or moving to a new address.
For example, you can use a living trust amendment form to:
- Change or add beneficiaries
- Update grantor, trustee, or beneficiary information
- Modify restrictions or conditions for the distribution of principal or income
- Remove or add property to the trust
- Reduce or expand trustee powers
- Change the nomination of trustees and successor trustees
- Remove a current beneficiary from the trust
Can a Trustee Amend a Trust?
For revocable trusts, the grantor has the power to amend the trust during the grantor’s lifetime and to decide who is allowed to amend the trust. Oftentimes, the grantor designates themselves as the initial trustee, in which case they can amend the trust. Ultimately, the ability to amend depends on whether the grantor decides to give the trustee that power.
How To Write an Amendment to a Trust
Follow the steps below to complete your trust amendment form. You can also use our document builder to create your custom trust amendment with guidance at each step.
Step 1: Download a Free Trust Amendment Form
Use the trust amendment templates below as a guide for amending your living trust.
Step 2: Include Important Details
Ensure your form includes the following information:
- Jurisdiction: Include the state and/or county in which your living trust was filed.
- Full Title of Trust: Provide the full name of the original trust exactly as it appears on the living trust document.
- Date of Amendment: Add the day, month, and year this amendment form is being completed.
- Identify the Grantor: Identify the name of the Grantor. The Grantor is the person who created and executed the original living trust.
- Amendments: List all of the changes you want to make to the original document. The trust amendment form should identify the changes by section or paragraph number.
Step 3: Sign and Notarize the Form
The Grantor should sign the form to make the document legally binding. Some states require you to sign the form in the presence of a notary public or witnesses.
Even if not required by your state’s laws, notarization helps show that the living trust amendment is authentic and legitimate and may prove helpful if the amendment is ever challenged in court.
How Much Does It Cost To Amend a Trust?
The cost of amending a trust will depend mainly on how you decide to do it. If you choose to revoke the old trust and have an attorney draft a new one, the costs could easily exceed $1,000. Attorneys may help amend an existing living trust for around $300-$600, depending on where you live and the complexity of the original trust and amendment process.
You can also use our trust amendment document builder and free templates to amend your living trust. This option allows you to change the terms of your trust quickly and easily, without paying attorney fees.