Land Trusts are sometimes referred to as Florida or Illinois 'type' trusts because of their favorable state laws and years of case history. Land Trusts are designed to hold title to real property and real property assets including real estate options, contracts and mortgages. Technically, a land trust is a form of intervivos trust. Intervivos means "among or between the living" and hence the term "living trust". Land Trust assets are considered personal property to the beneficiary, which is not subject to judgement creditors in some states. However, existing court precedence has held that, "If a settlor has the right to revoke a trust, all of the assets are treated as owned by the settlor and is ignored for creditor purposes, just as it is ignored for tax purposes." Land Trusts can be revocable or irrevocable. If created as revocable, the Land Trust serves primarily as a means of lawful tax avoidance and an excellent veil of anonymity. Even if a judge were to call you into a debtor's examination requiring you to provide ownership information under criminal penalty (wherein you may not plead your 5th amendment rights), if the beneficial interest owner of the Land Trust is an entity (such as a Limited Liability Company), such a structure can provide outstanding asset protection under scrutiny.
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