What's a Private Trust Company (PTC)?
A Private Trust Company is a company created to be the trustee of one, or more than one, family trusts; a PTC cannot solicit business with the public, their sole purpose is to act as the trustee for a trust or related trusts. It is generally used by families wishing to ensure their Wyoming trust is well maintained and well run and so that they can have a say in the trust’s decisions.
Is a PTC Right for You?
One of the main benefits of a PTC is the level of control and privacy the trustor (you) has over the trust’s finances. A PTC is run by a board of directors in charge of making decisions, just like any other company. The benefit is that you can appoint any number of family members, trusted business partners, or legal experts to this board. You can even appoint yourself. The trust’s finances are therefore in the hands of people you can rely on. And because these are people you can rely on a PTC maintains more confidentiality than a large and highly regulated international financial institution.
In today’s world, financial circumstances can change day to day. With a PTC you can react quickly to these changing circumstances, because your board of directors will be more familiar with the transactions of the company than a corporate trustee. Therefore, they can be more efficient when reacting to those changing circumstances.
Lastly, with a PTC many trusts can be unified under a single set of laws, instead of differing jurisdictions. Decision making is therefore simplified and more effective. Succession is also simplified under a PTC. There is a clear hierarchy of decision making that obviates the messy legal battles that can occur with trusts.
If you would like to maintain a high level of control over your family’s trusts, maintain privacy, increase your flexibility in the face of changing circumstances, and simplifying the hierarchy of control, then a Private Trust Company is probably right for you. Contact our trust attorney today.
The Benefits of a PTC
Wyoming has the distinct characteristic of having no contribution requirements and zero State oversight. In most places a minimum contribution of $200,000 to $500,000 is required and there is significant regulation. However, in Wyoming a Wyoming Single Family Private Trust Company (WPTC) is either a Wyoming LLC or Corporation established to serve your family.
Trust Company Terms
- Owners: The company is owned by you and your family. You, family and trusted advisers fill committee and officer roles.
- Committees: These are not required, however, they are useful for operations and administration.
- Contracted Services: Contracts may be entered into with advisers, attorneys, CPAs and more.
- Articles: These are filed with the Secretary of State. To receive Banking Commission approval, they must specify they will not provide trustee services to the general public.
- Important Documents: These will either be an operating agreement for an LLC or bylaws for a corporation.
- Maintenance: The initial filing is quick. Future maintenance only requires a registered agent, annual report, and annual meeting.
Requirements to Establish a Family Office
To form a PTC in Wyoming you are required to establishing an office for your family. Cloud Peak Law Group provides the following services to support your family office:
- Assistance Establishing a Private Trust Company
- Registered Agent in Wyoming
- Providing an Address in Wyoming
- Mail Forwarding & Scanning Services
- Local Phone Number
- Wyoming Bank Account
- Assistance Filing With the WY Secretary of State
- Counseling Regarding Trust Assets
- Coordinating with Professionals, Managers and Advisers
An irrevocable trust is treated as its own person in the eyes of the law. For this reason, it cannot be revoked by a judge to pay your debts. The trust is its own entity with its own rights under the eyes of the law.
Do not let the term irrevocable scare you however. The trust we draft allows you to change beneficiaries at anytime for any reason. You may also act as your own trustee or appoint and remove other trustees at your discretion. Distributions must be approved by you and you may invest or use the trust's assets as you wish.
The choice between a private and public trust company is one which your family must make. In our experiences, though, the private option's benefits often exceed the public alternative. If you prefer a public trust company, then just let us know. We would be happy to place you in touch with a trustee which can meet your needs.
Frequently Asked Questions
Wyoming, Nevada and South Dakota are the most popular private trust company situs locations. Wyoming has the smallest required capital contribution and pairs well with the self-settled trust for families desiring more privacy and control.
A trust is not a legal entity per se in Wyoming. A trust is a contract under the law with a grantor, beneficiary and trustee. The trust is, however, treated as a person under the law as determined by the Supreme Court.
A Private Trust Company is meant to lower management fees for a family trust, or series of related trusts, while also providing additional control and investment flexibility versus a public trustee.
A Private Family Trust Company (PTC) is an LLC or Corporation created solely for the purpose of being trustee to one or more related family trusts, but not to provide services to the public.