• James D. Lynch


There are three parties to a trust:

● Settlor: the person that sets up the trust and contributes property to the trust.

● Trustee: the person that manages the property placed in the trust.

● Beneficiary: the person that ultimately receives the property from the trust.

Although a trust involves three parties, it does not require three people. The settlor and the trustee can be the same person. In addition, the settlor and the beneficiary can be the same person. If there is more than one trustee and/or more than one beneficiary, one person can be both a trustee and beneficiary.

However, if there is only one trustee and one beneficiary, the trustee and the beneficiary can NOT be the same person. This is because a trust requires a division of legal ownership (held by the trustee) and equitable ownership (held by the beneficiary). If the sole trustee is also the sole beneficiary, the "merger doctrine" applies (i.e. the legal and equitable ownership interests merge), thereby terminating the trust.

Want to learn more about trusts? Please contact us and speak to one of our professionals.

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Law Office of James D. Lynch, PLLC

3000 Joe Dimaggio Blvd #90, Round Rock, TX 78665


(512) 745-6347

(714) 745-3875

©2020 by Law Office of James D. Lynch, PLLC. The information contained in this website is for informational purposes and is not to be considered legal advice.  Any correspondence between you and the Law Office of James D. Lynch is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship.  Please do not send confidential information to us until after an attorney-client relationship has been established by an engagement letter signed by the proposed client and our attorney.