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A Massachusetts trust is a business entity in which investors receive "trust certificates" representing their investments but the management authority is held by a trustee. It is similar to a limited partnership because the investors are only at risk up to the amount of their investment and are not personally liable for any debts of the trust.
The Massachusetts trust is created by a private, written contract. A trust contract is basically created by two or more individuals: trustor and trustee. The trustor (the owner of the assets being transferred into the trust), makes an offer to the trustee to manage the trust. The trustor exchanges his or her assets (such as business interests, real estate, stocks and bonds) to the trustee for Certificates of Capital Units ( personal property similar to shares of stock in a corporation). Its existence and operation are controlled by its contract, not by state corporation law.