A living trust is an estate planning document that allows people to manage their wealth and property while they’re alive, during any period of disability and after they die.
This type of trust is called “revocable” because it can be changed or canceled any time you want. You set up a revocable living trust during your lifetime, typically naming yourself as the trustee. Once the trust is established, you transfer legal title of your assets to the trust so that when you die, the named trustee will control those assets for the benefit of the beneficiaries you’ve chosen. Assets held in a revocable living trust won’t go through probate at death, sparing family members from expensive and public court proceedings.
Top 5 Benefits of a Revocable Trust
- A revocable living trust gives the grantor (the person creating the trust) complete power over all financial decisions relating to them or changes that might be made thereto during his or her lifetime for as long as he or she is capable.
- A revocable living trust enables the grantor to name themselves as current trustee (the person who manages the trust) and designate a co-trustee or substitute trustee to act on their behalf if they become unable to function as trustee for any reason.
- A revocable living trust can also avoid (or minimize) estate taxes, keep your affairs out of the public record, reduce family expenses, provide privacy for your heirs, and protect you from having to go through the probate process after you pass away.
- A revocable living trust may be useful for individuals who are remarried or who are in a blended family and want to keep their assets separate. This is especially true when each spouse has property they wish to retain for specific reasons. For example, a spouse in a blended family may want to make sure that the family home passes only to their own children at their death.
- A revocable living trust can provide asset protection to the beneficiaries after the grantor of the trust dies. Upon the death of the grantor, the trust then becomes irrevocable, making it more difficult for creditors of the surviving spouse or other beneficiaries to access any property placed within.
If you want to keep your financial affairs private, estate taxes down, and provide protection for loved ones after death – all while avoiding probate court – a revocable living trust may be the estate planning choice for you. This type of legal document gives you complete control over all aspects of your finances during your lifetime as well as provides asset protection in case something were to happen to you unexpectedly.
Contact the revocable living trust attorneys at Roth Elder Law, PLLC today for a consultation. We can be reached at 607-962-6162.