When deciding between creating a living trust or a will, you need to look to the experienced estate planning attorneys at Lucé Law, PC.
A living trust is a legal document designed and written by you during your lifetime. Like a will, a living trust will dictate your desires regarding your assets, dependents and heirs. The most significant difference between a will and a living trust is that a will only activates after you’ve died and it has entered probate. In contrast, a living trust bypasses the costly process of probate, enabling your trustee to carry out your instructions immediately.
What Are the Benefits of a Living Trust?
Many people these days are wondering whether they should write a living trust. For individuals who have a somewhat complicated personal or financial situation, a living trust is usually more appropriate than a will.
For example, at the time of your death, if you have substantial assets, a mixed family, closely-held business interests, or property in another state, a living trust will suit your needs better. A living trust is also usually sufficient for unmarried people, regardless of financial assets. To understand if this is right for you, it’s important to note the benefits of a living trust.
1. Avoids Probate
Probate is the process of doling out a person’s estate. If you place your property in a living trust you can avoid probate – which can be a very expensive and stressful process. Having a living trust firmly in place can also mean a faster distribution to your heirs.
2. Saves You Money
A living trust can save you money because it ensures that your estate will not go through probate. This means no court costs! At first, drafting a trust may cost more than a will (which is usual). Subsequently however, the living trust will ultimately save money and time by avoiding court costs, probate – and allowing an easier transfer of assets.
It is important to note that a living trust may not necessarily be the best financial decision if you have no children or significant assets.
3. Protects Your Privacy and Provides Peace of Mind
A living trust will protect your privacy. It is a private document that does not become part of the public record. So, no one can search public records later to find out how your estate was distributed.
The Types of Living Trusts
There are currently two primary types of living trusts to consider.
Revocable Living Trust
With a revocable trust, you will transfer all assets over to your trust. You will retain total control of all assets as the trustee of the living trust. However, you may then choose to change or revoke the trust at any time. The assets will pass directly to your listed beneficiaries without entering probate.
Irrevocable Living Trust
An irrevocable living trust, on the other hand, allows you to give away all assets permanently. Once your assets are gone, you relinquish all control and interest over them. These assets are no longer a part of your estate and are not subject to estate taxes. An irrevocable trust is only appropriate in rare circumstances.
Contact Lucé Law, PC Today for Your Living Trust Needs
Do you have questions about a living trust or need help getting one created? For more information on a living trust, contact Lucé Law, PC online or by calling (972) 632-1300. We’re here for you and your family.