A revocable living trust is the legal vehicle designed to avoid the hassle, expense, and publicity of probate. By placing your assets in trust, they are still controlled by you during your lifetime, but are preserved and protected afterward. There are many different kinds of trusts, including those designed specifically for blended families, pets, and others. Trusts can last for generations, leaving a meaningful legacy. They can offer protection from your children's future divorce, creditors, bankruptcy, and more. They can be set up to distribute on a schedule, all at once, or upon conditions. They allow tremendous control and little interference. They can be customized to ensure that your wishes are what matters.
Maybe you've heard about wills and trusts, but aren't sure which is right for you. Here are a few things to think about. If you have over $75,000 in personal property or over $100,000 equity in real estate, your estate will have to go through probate. Someone with less in assets, most likely only needs a will. And a will is especially important for appointing a guardian for minor children.
For those who have accumulated assets that require probate, please know that a will does not avoid probate. However, it does help to direct the process. There will still be at least a four-month process that allows creditors to stake a claim. During that time, assets are locked and the family can receive only a statutory provision for living expenses, which may not be enough.
A trust avoids the probate process altogether, saving your family from the challenges or additional time, expense, and hassle when they are grieving.
Still unsure what works for you? Schedule a free consultation.