A living trust is a written legal document that exists as a partial substitute for a will. When you have a living trust, your assets (such as a house, a bank account, or stock holdings) are put into the trust to be administered for your benefit during life and then transferred to beneficiaries when you pass away.
Do you need a living trust? It depends. The creation of a living trust is a personal decision you should make based on your expectations for the division of your property throughout your life and after death. However, it is something you should consider. Some people, such as young married couples with no children that intend to leave their assets to one another when one dies, do not necessarily need a living trust. If you do not have significant assets and have simple estate plans, you do not necessarily need a living trust. And if you believe that allowing the courts to have supervision over your estate would be beneficial, you may not need a living trust.
However, life has a way of throwing curveballs, and when those pitches are made, a living trust can be a valuable tool. For example, if you become incapacitated in some way, a living trust allows you to dictate the division of your estate through the service of your chosen successor trustee. By creating a living trust, you can choose someone to make decisions about the division of your assets – without one, you are leaving that decision up to the courts.
In the end, it’s up to you and your family. Things can change; unfortunate accidents may happen. These thoughts may have never crossed your mind, but it’s never too late to take the first few steps. If you wish to take these first steps, call Daniel J. Tripathi at (877) 422-5297 to schedule a free consultation.