Alternate Living Trust Beneficiaries: Why Every Will and Trust Needs Them To Protect Property and Estate Alternate beneficiaries - this is the person and/or organization you allot a gift to through the direct beneficiary, should the direct beneficiary pass away before you or does not live beyond for a certain period of time, usually between 30 to 45 days. This is what's known as survivorship requirement. For every direct beneficiary you have, you can name one or several alternate beneficiaries. It's not uncommon for a spouse to name one another... then their children as the alternate living trust beneficiaries. Of course, other alternate beneficiary plans are a bit more complicated.