The key to effective estate planning
Why Create A Living Trust
For most people, the first step in estate planning is to create a will, but there are more comprehensive options. A living trust can provide you with many benefits that are not available with a will.
A will communicates how you would like your assets to be distributed upon death and who you want to administer your estate.
A living trust (sometimes called an inter-vivos trust) is similar in that it does all this. However, it also allows you to retain control of your estate before and after your death.
Key benefits of A Living Trust
Unlike a Will (for assets over $75,000), assets included in living trust are not subject to probate. This avoids possible delays of months or even years, as well as expensive executor and legal fees. A successor (named in the living trust document) is able to administer your estate to transition your assets.
If you become unable to effectively look after your estate or become incapacitated due to mental disability your named successor can manage your financial affairs without the expense and delays associated with further legal work. A Will on its own won’t allow this and your loved ones would have to ask the court to appoint a conservator to manage your financial affairs.
If privacy is important to you or your beneficiaries, a living trust is more secure than a Will as it remains a private document. A Will, on the other hand, will be a matter of public record because it must be filed with the probate court. Anyone can access your probate court file for their benefit.
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