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Trusts to be or Not to be

87-MAY Fla. B.J. 30

Florida Bar Journal
May, 2013

Column: Real Property, Probate and Trust Law


R. Craig Harrison

Copyright © 2013 by The Florida Bar; R. Craig Harrison

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…be allocated to a tax credit shelter trust so that the disclaimed interest will not be part of the surviving spouse’s estate, and continue creditor protection on the disclaimed portion. Further, probate continues to be avoided.


A married couple can transfer TBE property to a trust that provides the couple with both the benefits of a trust and creditor protection. If federal (or other) estate taxes need to be addressed, the surviving spouse can be provided with a right to disclaim his or her interest in the TBE trust to be allocated to a tax credit shelter trust. With the estate tax exemption permanently set at $5 million (plus indexing) and the portability option, the TBE trust is certainly a viable estate planning tool for a married couple.

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