Most people are familiar with how to traditionally own and title property – an account may be in your name alone or in joint name with a spouse.  Your home may be held in “joint tenants with rights of survivorship”. A trust is simply a form of property ownership, not unlike the ones you already know.

What distinguishes a trust is that legal “ownership” of the property is the name of trustee.  The trustee’s role and only interest in the property is to manage it for the trust’s beneficiaries – the people whom you wish to benefit.

Think of a trust as an empty box. You create the box and then fill it with assets – commonly such investment assets as mutual funds, stocks and bonds. Because you created the box, you get to determine how the assets inside of it will be made available to your beneficiaries – when, how much, and under what conditions.

For over 134 years, AAFMAA has had only the best interests of its members at heart. Today, we extend that focus, attention and dedication to comprehensive Financial Planning, Investment Management, and Trust Services to our members through AAFMAA Wealth Management & Trust.  We invite you to learn more about our services and how we can partner with you to provide the best future for your family.


John Sledgianowski is an AAFMAA Benefits Advisor.


Have you found a great way to save money? What budgeting tips have helped you organize your family’s finances? Share your financial story, resource or advice to inform your fellow MilSpouses.

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