Estate Planning Terminology
Affidavit of Collection
A means of handling small estates (less than $50,000) by affidavit.
Anything, tangible or intangible, a person owns that has value.
A person designated to receive assets from a will or trust.
A deed to convey property to another on the death of the owner.
A gift of personal property by will.
Certificate of Trust
A certificate containing information about a Trust which others may rely upon.
Certified Private Fiduciary
An individual licensed by the Arizona Supreme Court to serve as a Personal Representative, Guardian, Conservator or Trustee.
Charitable Remainder Trust
One popular variety of several types of trusts established under the Internal Revenue Code whereby an individual donates prescribed sums to charities and receives certain tax benefits.
A legal document which changes an existing will, without revoking it.
An individual appointed by the Court to care for the financial affairs of an incapacitated living person.
An individual who holds assets for a child beneficiary until the child attains majority.
The person who has died.
A gift of real property by will.
All the assets possessed by an individual at the time of death.
The process and plan by which an individual plans to distribute his/her assets at death.
The tax imposed on the transfer of assets from a decedent to his/her heirs.
Executor (male) Executrix (female), in Arizona: Personal Representative
The individual named in a will and appointed by a court to settle the estate of a deceased.
A trusted individual, such as a Trustee or an Executor, who acts primarily on behalf of a beneficiary.
Generation Skipping Transfer
A transfer of assets in a trust that is designed to provide benefits for beneficiaries who are two or more generations younger than the deceased.
The person who creates the Trust.
The person named to care for an incapacitated person and their personal affairs.
A person who is entitled by law to inherit all or part of an estate of a decedent or an ancestor.
A will wholly hand written, dated and signed by the Testator.
The beneficiary who is entitled to receive the income from a trust.
Inter Vivos Trust
A trust created by one or two persons to become valid during their lifetimes. See also: Living Trust.
The description for someone who dies without having a valid will.
A trust that cannot ordinarily be changed or terminated after it is established.
Joint Tenancy Trust
A Deed with two or more owners (Grantees) whereby the real property passes to the last of the owners to survive.
Document issued by the probate court giving the Personal Representative authority to administer the estate under the provisions of the decedent’s will.
A trust into which an individual places all of his/her property during their lifetime, which is distributed upon the death of the individual.
The designation whereby an estate is distributed equally among a group, such as children, who survive the decedent (lit: by the head). The antithesis of per stirpes.
The designation whereby an estate is distributed equally among a group, and descendants of a deceased member of the group receive that deceased member’s share. The antithesis of per capita.
Power of Appointment
A right granted to a beneficiary of a trust to designate a gift to another.
Power of Attorney
A document in which an individual assigns the authority to another to act as the individual’s principal. Powers of attorney can be for specific matters (special power of attorney) or all matters (general power of attorney).
A court procedure for settling the personal matters of a decedent by establishing the legal transfer of property, by the Personal Representative directly to the beneficiaries.
A person who is authorized to act on an individual’s behalf, such as a trustee or executor.
Prudent Investor Rule
A doctrine which provides guidance to investment managers regarding the standards of managing an investment portfolio in a legally satisfactory manner.
Named beneficiaries in one generation and their children in the next generation.
The interest left to a beneficiary after the death of the income beneficiary.
The designation of the beneficiary of the remainder interest.
Right of Representation
Another term for per stirpes.
A Trust that can be changed after it has been established by the Grantor(s) who set it up.
Rule Against Perpetuities
Limits the testator’s power to earmark gifts for remote descendants.
An Arizona witnessed will in which the signatures of the Testator and witnesses has been notarized, and does not require testimony to be admitted to probate.
A Trust which bars the seizure of the Trust’s assets by a beneficiary’s creditors.
A Trust which allows the Trustee to determine the manner of distributing principal and/or income among the beneficiaries (also: Spray Trust).
Tangible Personal Property List
A separate signed and dated list of items of personal property which the Personal Representative must follow in distributing the specific property item to those named therein.
A Trust created under a will which comes into existence upon the death of an individual.
Testator or Testatrix
The name given a male person who makes a will.
The name given a female person who makes a will.
A document which provides that one party (Trustee) can hold property for the benefit on another (beneficiary).
Trust Declaration or Instrument
A document defining the nature and duration of a trust, the powers of the trustee and the trust’s beneficiaries.
The name given a designated person in a Trust who may direct the Trustee to do certain specifically designated acts with the Trust property.
The individual or entity that holds, manages and invests the assets of a Trust for a beneficiary.
Allows distributions of discrete percentages from a trust, as opposed to just distributions of income.
An individual’s written declaration regarding the disposal or distribution of his/her property after death.