Setting up a Trust is sort of like creating another person to hold your property during your lifetime. And, like a Will, a Trust can be revoked or amended, if circumstances change (so long as it is created to be revocable). Similarly, with a revocable Trust, you can transfer property in and out during your lifetime. We can also refer you to a competent accountant to assist you in all tax-related aspects of your Trust.
One of the main purposes of a Trust is to save your loved ones and heirs the headache of a probate after you’re gone. With a properly drafted and funded Trust (meaning that you have transferred your property into the Trust), your loved ones and heirs will generally not be required a court action to distribute the property held by the Trust. Avoiding the probate process can be a huge benefit to your loved ones and heirs who are already dealing with enough emotional trauma with your passing.
We can explain the importance of executing a Will at the same time you execute your Trust, which will effectively convey any property to your Trust that you forgot to put into the Trust during your lifetime, so that that property can be distributed according to the terms of your Trust. While the goal is to get all of your property into the Trust, sometimes property is forgotten or missed, and a Will is a useful way to account for such property. If you forget to put property into your Trust, your loved ones and heirs may need to go through the probate process to address the forgotten property, but with a Will, you can still control how that property is ultimately dispersed. We will talk you through this process in more detail when we meet.
A Trust is also a good way to address how your young children will ultimately receive whatever property is left to them (in the event you happen to pass before they reach a certain age). For example, if you have younger children, you can instruct that the Trust not disburse their property until they reach adulthood, turn 21, turn 25, etc. Or you can instruct that the Trust only disburse certain portions of property as your children reach certain ages. There are many options for providing for your children and we can work with you to come up with a plan that makes sense for your family.