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Virginia Certificate of Trust

Signed by a currently acting trustee, a certification or certificate of trust under Va. Code Ann. 64.2-804 is a document summarizing a trust in lieu of the trust instrument, and contains certified statements affirmed by the trustee in the presence of a notary public. The document confirms the existence of the subject trust and the trustee's capacity and relevant powers, and is presented in support of a transaction involving trust property.

A certificate of trust is frequently recorded alongside a trustee's deed or acquisition of real property by the trust, though recording of the document is not required by Virginia Code. Instead of disclosing the settlor's estate plan by providing the entire trust instrument, the certificate allows a trustee to provide parties outside of the trust arrangement (anyone who is not a trust beneficiary) only the essential information necessary to conduct the business at hand. Recipients of a certificate "may assume without inquiry the existence of the facts contained" within it ( 64.2-804(F)).

Requirements of a certificate include statements that the trust exists and that it has not been revoked or modified in a way that would invalidate the contents of the certificate. The form presents basic information, such as the trust's name and date; the identities of the settlor and the current trustee; the trust's identification number; and the name by which property is titled to the trust. In addition, the document identifies anyone who can revoke the trust and, if there are co-trustees, the specifications for authenticating documents relating to the trust.

Further, the document enumerates the powers of the trustee pertaining to the transaction for which the certificate is presented. These may include powers under the Uniform Trust Code, codified at 64.2-7 of the Virginia Code. Recipients of a certificate can also request excerpts of the trust instrument and any amendments thereto that designate the trustee and establish these powers.

Consult a lawyer with questions about trusts and certifications of trust in Virginia.

Deeds.com Virginia Certificate of Trust Forms Have Been Updated as Recently as Friday June 26, 2020

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Virginia Certificate of Trust Form