Glossary Trust and Probate

Glossary Trust and Probate Key Terms

  • Ginette Skelton
  • 04/7/22

Import Key Trust and Probate Terms

Here is a Glossary of Trust and Probate with terms you’ll want to know:

Agent: A person who acts on another person’s behalf.

Attorney In Fact: A person given written authorization to act on another's behalf by a Power of Attorney Document.

Beneficiary: (1) The person for whose benefit a trust is created. (2) The person to assets of a financial account, insurance policy, or annuity is payable. The trustee and the beneficiary can be the same person.

Custodian of the Will: The person who has the Will when the person who wrote the Will dies.

Decedent (or deceased): The person who died.

Decedent’s estate: All the property (real or personal) that a person owned at the time of death.

Executor: An individual or a trust institution nominated in a will and appointed by the court to settle the estate.

Fiduciary: An individual or a trust institution charged with the duty of acting in the interest of another party. Examples: trustees, executors, and administrators.

Grantor: A person who creates a trust, such as a living trust, to become operative in his lifetime; also called donor, settlor, and the trustor.

Heir: A person who inherits when there is no Will.

Intestate: When someone dies without leaving a Will.

Intestate succession: The order of who inherits the property when someone dies without a Will.

Irrevocable Trust: A trust that the settlor cannot revoke.

Legatees or devisees: People who are named in a Will.

Personal property: Things like cash, stocks, jewelry, clothing, furniture, or cars.

Personal representative (or administrator or executor): The person responsible for overseeing the distribution of the estate.

Probate (Verb): To present a will to the court for the appointment of the executor administrator.

Probate (Noun): Process of transferring title from a deceased person to their heir's law.

Power of Attorney: A document authorizing the person named to act as an agent on behalf of another.

Real property: Buildings and land.

Revocable Trust: A trust that the settler may terminate.

Successor Trustee: A trustee following the original or a prior.

Testate: When someone dies leaving a Will.

Trust: When one person (trustee) holds property at another person’s (settler’s) for the benefit of someone else (the beneficiary).

Will: A legally enforceable declaration of a person’s wishes in writing regarding to be attended to after their death.

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