What can I do if my spouse and I don't want separate trusts?
There is an easy answer for this. You and your spouse may create a joint
revocable trust. As an overview, a trust is a fiduciary relationship in
which one party, known as a settlor, gives another party, the trustee,
the right to hold title to property or assets for the benefit of a third
party, the beneficiary. You may form the trust in your name alone, or
you may form a joint revocable trust with your spouse. Joint revocable
trusts have been used historically as a mechanism for married persons
to combine assets and control their disposition in a uniform manner. The
predeceasing spouse, upon the death of the first spouse will have a general
testamentary power of appointment over the entire joint revocable trust
assets. The trust becomes irrevocable on the death of the predeceasing
spouse and a credit shelter trust will be funded on the death of the surviving spouse.