Washington Adds Trust Decanting To The Estate Planners Toolbox

By: Eric J. Sachtjen

Previous to the enactment of Washington’s decanting statute, estate planners who wanted to modify an otherwise irrevocable trust had to rely upon other methods, such as a Trust and Estate Dispute Resolution Act (“TEDRA”) proceeding, consolidation of trusts, or a written, binding TEDRA agreement. While rules and limitations apply, Washington’s new law, which is effective July 23, 2017, authorizes trustees to amend the provisions of irrevocable trusts or “pour over” the assets of the old trust into a new trust. Paine Hamblen’s Fred Emry worked with two other Washington attorneys for three years on the drafting and passage of the new law.