Sometimes clients who want a more comprehensive estate plan will create a living trust to help them avoid probate. A living trust can be an effective tool for meeting your estate planning needs, but it is by no means necessary.
The living trust got its name because it is created and becomes effective while the person is still alive. This is different from a testamentary trust, which is created at the time of the creator’s death.
A key purpose of a living trust is to avoid the probate process as much as possible and keep the disposition of assets from the public record. While a living trust cannot completely avoid probate, it can certainly help make the process easier on your loved ones.
A living trust is not a requirement, but it can make the transfer of assets to your survivors easier. The ownership of any property that you transfer into the living trust prior to your death will be transferred to the beneficiaries you listed in your trust after your death. Any of the property in the living trust at the time of your death will not need to go through the probate process. When all the property has been transferred, the trust is terminated.
A living trust can be a very useful tool for avoiding probate costs and delays. If you have questions about a living trust you should contact an estate planning attorney to discuss your options.
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