Wills & Trusts
What is a Revocable Living Trust?
A Revocable Living Trust is a document which directs how your estate should be distributed after your death. When properly created, having a Revocable Living Trust can transfer Trust property directly to the beneficiary without a probate. A Trust is created and a Trustee is appointed to manage your estate. You must transfer ownership of all your property, including (for example) all real estate, personal property, bank accounts, and pension accounts to the name of the Trust while you are alive.
How do I know if I need a Revocable Living Trust?
A Revocable Living Trust can help to avoid the cost of probate. If you have assets and want certain assets to be accounted for in a particular way or to continue their existence then a Revocable Living Trust will help you accomplish this. Having a Revocable Living Trust can help you manage your assets your entire life.
What are the advantages of a Revocable Living Trust?
When properly created, having a Revocable Living Trust means that assets you put into the Trust can be passed to the beneficiary without a probate when you die. A properly created Revocable Living Trust can also avoid the necessity of having a guardianship established if you become disabled in the future. Since Revocable Living Trusts are not usually filed with the Court, having such a Trust gives you a greater degree of privacy than a Will which becomes part of the public record once it has been filed after your death.
Are there ways to avoid Guardianship without using a Revocable Living Trust?
Yes. Durable Powers of Attorney can avoid the need for a guardianship if you become disabled. Durable Powers of Attorney can cover both health care issues and financial issues and can be written by an attorney for much less than the cost of a Revocable Living Trust.
Are there other types of Trusts?
Yes. A Testamentary Trust is created by your Will, and upon your death establishes one or more trusts for one or more of your heirs. Specific terms can be written into a Testamentary Trust such as when the money in the Trust can be distributed to the heir or for what purposes Trust money can be spent.