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Personal Trust Services

Join the other individuals, families, financial advisors, businesses, and institutions who have found Christiana Trust to be a firm uniquely responsive to clients’ needs. Christiana Trust administers over 1,100 trusts, ranging in assets from under $1,000,000 to in excess of $1,000,000,000 for very successful families. Whether you are interested in personal trusts, or other asset management services, our financial experts are here to help you reach your goals.

About Christiana Trust

From our beginning, Christiana Trust has been dedicated to providing exceptional personal service and professional assistance to individuals, families, and corporate and institutional clients. Christiana Trust has built a worldwide reputation for the administration and servicing of trust and asset management accounts of all types.

Christiana Trust is a division of WSFS Bank, a Delaware institution founded in 1832 and one of the ten oldest banks in the United States continuously operating under the same name. Christiana Trust also has an office in Nevada that was established in 2001.

Adding to WSFS’ history of world-class service, Christiana Trust adds its own proud traditions and expertise. When you work with us, you secure the advantages of our:

  • Extensive Experience
  • Exceptional Service
  • Dedicated Trust Administrators
  • Exclusive Individualized Approach

Our Services

Types of Personal Trusts Offered by Christiana Trust

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Asset Protection Trust

An Asset Protection Trust is an irrevocable trust that is created in order to protect assets from potential creditor claims. Asset Protection Trusts are particularly useful for clients in certain professions, such as physicians and attorneys.

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Cross-Border Trust

A Cross-Border Trust is a trust with one or more foreign components, such as a foreign grantor, a foreign beneficiary, or a foreign power holder. Cross-Border Trusts allow grantors to take advantage of the U.S. legal and economic system while retaining the flexibility to have the trust treated as foreign or domestic for income tax purposes.

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Directed Trust

A Directed Trust is a trust in which third parties are authorized to direct the trustee with respect to investments and/or discretionary distributions to beneficiaries. This is advantageous for the grantor, as they may either directly control or appoint trusted individuals or institutions to control the investments and/or distributions for a trust.

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Dynasty / Legacy Trust

A dynasty trust can offer substantial tax savings over time, thereby permitting the trust to accumulate value and benefit successive generations, as well as offer creditor protection. Delaware Dynasty Trusts can exist in perpetuity, while Nevada Trusts can last for 365 years.

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Fully Discretionary Trust

A Fully Discretionary Trust is a trust in which Christiana Trust has full discretion with respect to the management of investments/assets of the trust, and any decisions to make, or refrain from making, pertaining to distributions to the trust’s beneficiaries.

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Life Insurance Trust

There are two forms of life insurance trusts that are provided by Christiana. A Directed Life Insurance Trust is an irrevocable, non-amendable trust which is both the owner and beneficiary of one or more life insurance policies. Meanwhile, a Private Placement Life Insurance (PPLI) policy can provide both tax-free wealth growth and solid estate protection for your heirs. Wealthy families, family foundations, trusts, corporations and banks work with us to create personalized life insurance contracts, designed to reduce tax burdens.

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Statutory Trusts

Unlike a traditional common law trust, which is considered solely a fiduciary relationship, a Delaware statutory trust may elect to be treated as a separate legal entity, thereby offering greater flexibility and legal certainty for the management and administration of business assets and commercial transactions. Although statutory trusts are permissible in other states (sometimes referred to as “business trusts” in those states), Delaware is the widely recognized as the premier statutory trust jurisdiction because of its comprehensive statutory framework and dedicated Court of Chancery.

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Custody Services

Large bank sophistication and execution combined with personal attention and service are the focus of our custody services. Our tested state of the art technology, combined with administrative flexibility, ensures that our clients receive custody services that are second-to-none.

Learn more about the advantages of opening a trust in:

Nevada ⁠— The primary benefit to opening a trust in Nevada is that the state does not impose state income tax on trust income and capital gains that is accumulated for distribution to nonresident beneficiaries. There is also increased privacy and flexibility in Nevada.

Delaware ⁠— There are many advantages to opening a trust in Delaware. A key benefit is that Delaware does not impose state income tax on trust income and capital gains that is accumulated for distribution to nonresident beneficiaries. In addition, there is confidentiality, flexibility, and a very prominent judicial and legislative environment for disputes involving trusts.

Why Choose WSFS?

Christiana Trust was founded with a simple principle: combine superior, informed asset management services, delivered by experienced professionals with access to the best technology. Our dedicated Associates are committed to ensuring that our individual clients receive the personal attention they deserve and the services and products that are crucial to meeting their strategic goals.

Carefully implemented trust and asset management strategies can be instrumental in providing for the continued wellbeing of individuals and their families. When Christiana Trust acts as trustee, it does so in a personal and experienced manner that is tailored to each client’s requirements and expectations.

Our firm is staffed by knowledgeable and caring professionals committed to a high level of personal service. Working with the client’s trusted advisors, we provide the expertise needed to implement a strategy that will meet the client’s needs and objectives.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Personal Trust?

A Personal Trust is an estate planning vehicle whereby an individual (the “Settlor” or “Grantor”) assigns property to a Trustee to be held for the benefit of a selected class of beneficiaries in accordance with the terms of a written Trust Agreement.

The need for personal trust and investment services has never been greater. Individuals and families with substantial assets require workable, effective ways to help them minimize the impact of income and estate taxes, manage their financial assets, and ensure that they and their beneficiaries will be secure and protected, no matter what the future may bring.

Benefits of a Personal Trust

Control your wealth — A Personal Trust allows you to control the investment, management, and distribution of your wealth for future generations by setting rules and guidelines and appointing trusted independent fiduciaries and power holders to carry out your wishes for generations to come.

Protect your estate — A properly structured Personal Trust allows you to protect your estate from tax, creditors, or any other external threat for generations to come. A Personal Trust can be structured so that it is not accessible by beneficiaries’ creditors and will not be subject to estate, inheritance, or generation-skipping transfer tax at each generation.

Provide for your heirs — By allowing both the control and protection of your wealth, a Personal Trust provides the opportunity to preserve your wealth to the maximum extent possible for your heirs. Investment and distribution policies can be tailored to balance the needs of both current and future generations in the manner you intend.

Ensure privacy and security of your wealth — Many states do not require court registration of Personal Trusts and have no mandatory court accountings, meaning that your Personal Trust does not become a public document and your estate plan can remain private. In addition, the Trustee has a fiduciary duty to keep your Trust confidential, unless required to disclose information by law. Furthermore, certain trust-friendly jurisdictions, including Delaware and Nevada, permit the Trust Agreement to dictate how much information must be shared with the beneficiaries.

Investment Products: Are Not FDIC Insured | May Lose Value | Are Not Bank Guaranteed

Todd Hammond

AVP, Business Development Officer

Personal Trust

We provide high-quality trust services.

TommyJoe Valenzuela

VP, Trust Sales Officer

Personal Trust

Professional trust solutions to help you prepare for tomorrow.

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