A will is basically a letter to the Court explaining how you want your assets to be distributed following your death. The only one who listens to a will is a probate judge. The only place it is valid is in a probate court. The costs of probate are normally taken from your estate, and national averages are between 3% and 10% of all of your assets.
The alternative is a revocable living trust. Trusts are often formed to ease the transfer of assets to beneficiaries. You will still need a a short form version of a Will for two main reasons:
- In case something was left out of the trust, the will can put it in the trust to protect it.
- The will is also the place where guardians are named for minor children.
A trust is a merely a contract between the trustmaker (the person who set up the trust), the trustees (the caretakers) and the beneficiaries. The trustmaker must transfer property to the trust, which is called “funding” the trust. The trust will control how the property passes to the beneficiaries, not the court. After the trustmaker passes away or becomes incapacitated, the caretakers manage the trust according to the wishes of the trustmaker.
With a trust, it’s likely that your assets will pass to your beneficiaries confidentially with little to no involvement from the court. The entire process is faster, cheaper, and more effective than probate court.
We can help you take this important step. Since you and your circumstances are unique, contact us today and let’s explore the options.