If you have assets and currently have a will that stipulates who receives your assets after you die, you should consider switching to a living trust. Although there are certain aspects of a will that are attractive, especially for those with few assets, a living trust is often a better choice. The following are just a few reasons to consider creating a living trust.
You will avoid probate
Anytime you die with assets over a certain legal threshold according to state law, the assets of the deceased must go through the process of probate. This is when a probate court looks at all the decease's assets and liabilities to make sure everything is settled properly before the heirs receive anything stated in the will. This process can be very time-consuming, so you will be helping your loved ones receive their inheritance more quickly with a trust. In addition, the probate process is public, so your estate will be on display for the world to see. A living trust is more private.
A living trust holds up better against contention
Although it is true that a living trust can be contested just as a will can, a living trust is more difficult to contest successfully. There are many reasons for this, but at the top of the list is that a person is engaged in the activity of a trust, at least a revocable trust. As such, there is a financial record that documents the activity in the trust. This is important because the main reason for challenging either a trust or a will is that the deceased was not of sound mind or was unduly influenced by another. The activity in the trust will usually be enough to discourage anyone from a legal challenge.
You can control the timeline for disbursement
When you have a will, your assets will be transferred to the heir or heirs stated in your will. This can be a problem for many people when they consider the planning of their estate. You may have a son or daughter that lacks responsibility, so there is a good chance they may squander their inheritance quickly. But with a living trust, you can specify how much of the trust will be disbursed to your child and over specific time periods. For example, this may be in four equal payments every five years, or even a certain amount each month for the rest of their life.
There are many reasons to use a living trust instead of a will. Some of the best reasons include avoiding probate, keeping your family affairs private, reducing the chances of your wishes being contested, and controlling the timeline for distribution. For a more complete picture of these benefits, consult an estate planning attorney. Check out this website, https://www.linskylaw.com, or similar websites for more information.