The trust is a contract (Trust Deed) under which a person called the Settlor transfers the property of an asset to a Trustee who keeps and manages it in order to convey it, generally upon the death of the settlor, or on a date set in advance, to one or more Beneficiaries.

The contract sets the powers and duties of each of the contractors (the settlor and the trustee). It is also includes on the signing date, the nature of the assets, the settlor’s will, including regarding the beneficiaries as well as the breakdown of the assets per beneficiary.

The settlor retains the control of the assets during his lifetime and may for instance at any time:

  • either in the form of income of capital, withdraw funds for his own account.
  • change the Trustee.
  • change the beneficiary(ies).
  • change the breakdown per beneficiary.
  • terminate the Trust Deed.


  1. A trust is a structure that is governed by the laws of the settlor’s country (The Trust Law). The civil law of the settlor’s country of residence does not apply.
  2. A trust is perfectly anonymous both on settlor and beneficiary side. Indeed, the beneficiaries are not necessarily informed of the settlor’s intentions. Two separate beneficiaries will never know one another. The settlor of the trust will never be known to third parties.
  3. A trust allows to distinguish bare owner beneficiaries and beneficial owner beneficiaries.
  4. Tax-wise, a trust is neutral, as it is liable to no income tax or gain in value.
  5. Although it does not exist in the array of Luxembourg structures, a trust can be set up and easily managed from Luxembourg.

Trusts are recognised in Anglo-Saxon and German courts. Until recently, Latin courts did not recognised trusts. This is changing.

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