What is a Living Trust and When Should I Establish One?

Living Trust is a legal document where you transfer title of your assets into a Trust.  The Living Trust is controlled by you.  After your death the assets in trust remain legally bound to the provisions you appointed in the Living Trust and are thereafter only controlled by individuals or institutions that you specifically appointed.  A Living Trust is custom designed to your particular circumstances, and provides appropriate legal protections to ensure your exact wishes are carried out. Some common features of a Living Trust include: providing for a spouse during their lifetime while securing inheritance for your children; providing specialized instruction and legal protections for beneficiaries’ maintenance, education and financial needs; or protecting against a beneficiary’s poor spending habits.  If any of these provisions sound important to you, you might want to consider a Living Trust as a part of your estate plan.

Furthermore, there are certain common situations where a Trust is almost always essential.  These include if you have a business, an investment property, a second home (out of state), a special needs dependent, or are a high wealth individual.  If any of these situations describe you, then considering a trust is highly recommended in order to ensure proper legal protections.

Additionally, a establishing a Trust now can be a good idea for anyone who desires privacy or wishes to avoid probate.  Unlike a Will, a Trust keeps all your wishes private.  A Trust is never public record.  Also, unlike a will, a Trust further enables your estate to avoid probate.  Probate can be expensive, time consuming and extremely stressful upon your heirs and executor.  It can also last for many months or even years, limiting your heirs’ access to assets for varying periods of time.  For anyone who is concerned for privacy and the avoidance of probate, a Trust might be a wise decision. 

Contact us and let’s talk about whether or not a Trust can help your family.