Living Trust Attorney: Do I Need One?

Estate planning can be complex and daunting, but a living trust is a popular option that may simplify the process. Essentially, it’s a legal document that places your assets into a trust during your lifetime and outlines how they should be distributed after your death.

It differs from a will because it takes effect immediately while you are still alive. In this article, we’ll cover what a living trust is and how working with a living trust attorney can help you make the right decisions for your future and legacy.

First, let’s define a few legal terms.

  • A trust is a legal entity that holds and manages assets on behalf of a beneficiary.
  • There are several types of trusts, including revocable, irrevocable, testamentary, and charitable.
  • Compared to other types of trusts, living trusts are often preferred because they allow your assets to be distributed immediately after your death without going through probate court.

Probate is the legal process of distributing assets after someone dies. It can be a long, expensive, and public process. When you create a living trust, however, your assets are transferred to the trust while you are still alive, and the trust becomes the legal owner of those assets.

When you die, the assets are distributed according to the terms of the trust without the need for probate.

Revocable vs. Irrevocable: Which Is Better?

Choosing between a revocable and irrevocable trust depends on your specific needs and goals for estate planning.

Remember, a revocable living trust can be changed or revoked at any time during the grantor’s lifetime, giving you more flexibility and control. You can: a

  • Add or remove assets
  • Change beneficiaries
  • Modify the terms of the trust as circumstances change

On the other hand, an irrevocable trust cannot be changed or revoked once it has been created. This means that once you transfer assets into the trust, you can no longer control them.

However, there are some benefits to an irrevocable trust. For example, assets in an irrevocable trust may be protected from creditors and estate taxes.

When deciding between a revocable and irrevocable trust, you should consider factors such as:

  • Age
  • Health
  • Size of your estate
  • Goals for estate planning

Can You Set Up a Trust without an Attorney?

While it’s technically possible to set up a trust without an attorney, we strongly recommend against it.

Estate planning can be a complex process, with many legal and financial considerations to consider. Working with an experienced living trust attorney can provide you with the following benefits:

  • Ensure your trust is properly drafted and executed, meeting all legal and state requirements.
  • Help you avoid common mistakes and pitfalls leading to costly legal disputes.
  • Explain the benefits and drawbacks of different types of trusts so you stay informed to make the best decision for you
  • Ensure that your trust is properly funded and your assets are titled correctly

Ultimately, the decision to work with an attorney when setting up a trust is a personal one. Still, it is generally advisable to seek professional guidance to ensure your wishes are properly carried out.

Find a Living Trust Attorney Near You

Estate planning is a crucial step to ensure that your assets are distributed according to your wishes after you pass away.

It involves making many important decisions that can affect your family and loved ones’ future. To help you feel confident about your next steps, it’s essential to work with a living trust attorney who has the expertise to guide you through the process.

At KTF Law Firm, we offer comprehensive estate planning services and free consultations to help you get started.

Contact us today and let us help you plan for your legacy.

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