Domestic Security Trust (DST)
The Domestic Security Trust is an irrevocable trust used for the purposes of basic asset protection, estate planning, and estate tax and gift tax considerations that is domiciled within the United States. The goal in using a DST, as with any other irrevocable asset protection trust, is to remove ownership over your assets. Whoever owns asset“A” can lose asset “A” to a creditor. By establishing a DST, the Settlor removes ownership by creating a legally recognized“ultimate owner” (the DST). This means that the trust can own assets, and no individual or entity can own the trust. The DST stands alone.
Since the DST stands alone and cannot create liability, a judgment cannot be attached to the trust itself and certainly is protected from your personal creditors. The only way for a creditor to attack the trust is to claim fraudulent conveyance. Of course, this can be easily avoided if a trust is established before a Settlor has any known creditors or judgments against him.
Because no one wants to lose control over their assets, another entity, such as an LLC, FLP, or Corporation, is often used in conjunction with a DST so that the Settlor can have a legal right to control the assets transferred into the trust. This way, the Settlor can legally remove ownership over the asset without losing control of that asset. This type of structure removes ownership from the Settlor and renders the assets lawsuit proof.