The trusted name in dynasty trusts and asset protection.

In recent years, our customers have turned to Great Plains of South Dakota (GPSD) for trust management services. GPSD can be named as trustee, co-trustee, or successor trustee of your trust. If you decide to select a family member or another individual to serve as co-trustee, we will work closely with that person for professional administration and management of the trust assets. If you are using a revocable living trust as part of your estate plan and serving as the first trustee, GPSD can serve as your successor trustee upon your death or incapacity.


Why South Dakota?

  • South Dakota’s laws and statutes are particularly favorable when planning to protect assets for multiple generations.
  • South Dakota has no state income tax or capital gains tax, so assets within a trust can be sheltered from state taxation.
  • South Dakota has favorable creditor protection laws. The state has enacted laws that allow an individual to transfer assets to a trust for which he or she is the beneficiary and retain some control over the trust, and the assets can still be protected from creditors.
  • As far as privacy, South Dakota is the only state in the country with a total seal forever, providing the best trust privacy statute in the United States. For comparison, the second-best state is Delaware, which only provides a three-year seal.
  • As one of the four states in the country with a directed trust statute, South Dakota has industry-leading directed trust provisions that enable trustees to work with outside investment managers and nontraditional assets in trusts

Asset Protection

Trust planning can play an important part in protecting a client’s assets, and with proper planning people can protect the assets they have now as well as any inheritance they receive, or leave to loved ones, in the future. As litigation becomes more prevalent, and divorce becomes more common, people are looking for ways to organize their affairs and plan their estates in a way that will protect the assets they have worked hard to accumulate. Stories of lawsuits, divorce, and spendthrift children and grandchildren are becoming so widespread that people no longer believe that “it will never happen to my family.” While most jurisdictions provide some protection for beneficiaries of trusts, South Dakota statutes go even further, incorporating spendthrift clauses and stricter creditor protection. Several types of trusts make use of South Dakota’s advantageous trust and tax laws. South Dakota has modern trust laws that address creditor protection issues for trusts, and does not have a state income tax.

“Dynasty” Trusts

In South Dakota, inheritances and gifts can be structured to provide asset protection that prevents anyone other than the beneficiary from accessing assets into perpetuity (also known as “dynasty trusts”). Traditionally, inheritances were received outright and free of trust. Often, property is distributed as the beneficiary reaches a certain age (25, 35 and 40, for example). When the property is distributed, it becomes the property of the beneficiary and it becomes available to the beneficiary’s creditors. However, if the inheritance remains in trust for the life of the beneficiary, the trust can provide protection that prevents anyone other than the beneficiary from accessing assets. Because the assets are owned by the trust and not the beneficiary, it is difficult, if not impossible, for the beneficiary’s creditors to reach the assets. This type of asset protection planning can be done for assets left to a loved one at death or one can start funding these types of trusts for loved ones now by using lifetime gifts.  

Contact Great Plains Trust Company of South Dakota

Great Plains focuses on you. We work with clients across the country, coordinating with various providers and professionals to provide one contact point with terrific service. We like to meet one-on-one whenever possible, but can take care of most business over the phone and Internet. We have a great staff of relationship managers, trust officers and administrative staff who will work with your accountants, attorneys and other advisors through every stage of building wealth to be sure you are receiving great service and superior results.

Great Plains Trust South Dakota
101 S. Reid Street, Ste. 307
Sioux Falls, SD 57103

Office: 605-271-5141


William S. Lenker, CRSP


William S. Lenker joined Great Plains Trust of South Dakota in 2016 following over 20 years with Wells Fargo Bank in Sioux Falls, SD. Bill’s background includes Institutional Retirement and Trust experience as well as managing key relationships over time at Wells Fargo. He attended the University of South Dakota in Vermillion, SD and has been a lifelong resident of the area with his wife Stacey and two children. Bill remains very active in both charitable and civic organizations in Sioux Falls including Boy Scouts of America, Dow Rummel Village and his church. He continues to build the long term presence in Sioux Falls and surrounding areas.