One of the more common questions for estate planning attorneys is asked and addressed in an article from thebalance.com, “Will or Revocable Living Trust—Which Do You Need?” It’s a good question because many people don’t understand how important having a will is, even if you don’t have a large amount of property. The following are some factors to consider, when speaking with your estate planning attorney about wills and different types of trusts.
Mental Disability Planning. Regardless of the size of your net worth, you might want to consider a Revocable Living Trust for mental health planning. A properly drafted Revocable Living Trust, which should be prepared by an experienced estate planning attorney, will have provisions to determine mental capacity outside of a court proceeding. It will also state your wishes about taking care of you and your finances, in case you do become mentally incapacitated. It is likely that such a document could keep your family out of a court-supervised guardianship.
Minor Beneficiaries. This is what happens all too often: young parents have a life insurance policy or a retirement account through work. They divorce and one of the parents decides to name a minor child as a beneficiary. It is also possible that both parents could die, while the children are still minors. What happens to these assets? They are placed in a court-supervised guardianship for the benefit of the minor, until the child reaches 18. Parents can instead set up a Revocable Living Trust, naming the trust as the primary or contingent beneficiary of the life insurance or retirement account. They must then name a trustee to accept and manage the funds, instead of a court-appointed guardian. The judge does not know your child as well as you do and may not be able to nominate the most suitable person to be your child’s guardian. Children who are 18 years of age, are usually not ready to deal with large sums of money. With a Revocable Living Trust, the parents can dictate how old the children will be when they receive their inheritance. Some kids are ready at age 21, while others are not ready until they are 30 or ever.
Singles Need to Plan Also. If you have assets titled in your name and no legal partner, you could use a Revocable Living Trust to keep you and your assets out of a court-supervised guardianship and allow beneficiaries to avoid the cost of probate.
Planning for Second Marriages. If you and your spouse have children from prior marriages, you may have different beneficiaries. A Revocable Living Trust can ensure that each of your estate assets will be distributed where you want, outside of probate.
Don’t Forget to Fund. This last step gets forgotten all too often. If you create any kind of a trust, don’t forget to fund it and update your beneficiary designations. Otherwise, it won’t accomplish what you want.
If you want know whether a will or a trust is more suitable for you, contact an estate planning attorney today.
Reference: thebalance.com (June 29, 2018) “Will or Revocable Living Trust—Which Do You Need?”
在thebalance.com的一篇文章中提出並解決了資產規劃律師的一個常見問題，“Will or Revocable Living Trust—Which Do You Need?” (遺囑或生前信託 - 你需要哪一個) 這是一個很好的問題，因為即使你沒有大量財產，很多人也不明白有遺囑的重要性。在與你的資產規劃律師討論遺囑和不同類型的信託時，需要考慮以下因素。
參考: thebalance.com (June 29, 2018) “Will or Revocable Living Trust—Which Do You Need?”