immediate countable assets of irrevocable trust?

Transferring title to a house into an irrevocable trust can be a good way to protect the house against estate recovery. In order to prevent the house from being attached by the state following the former owner’s death after having received Medicaid while in the nursing home, the trust must not only be irrevocable but also not permit any distributions of principal out of the trust back to the grantor/beneficiary. It is possible, though, to give the grantor the lifetime right to live in the house, since that is considered an “income” right, not a right to access the “principal” of the trust.

The contents of the house would not be owned by the trust unless they were specifically transferred into the trust. The house is transferred by a deed that is recorded in the local registry of deeds. The contents are all exempt assets for Medicaid purposes and usually there is no need to transfer them into an irrevocable trust.

As for timing, the grantor would indeed have immediate access to the trust assets under the trust terms the instant it is signed and actually holds an asset. A trust can be signed without actually owning ANY assets; the