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Avoiding probate with a revocable living trust

On Behalf of | Dec 14, 2023 | Estate Planning |

A revocable living trust can be set up in conjunction with your will. This enables you to designate a trustee and give them ownership of your assets. Although ownership is transferred to your trustee, you retain control of them for the duration of your life. 

One of the biggest benefits of having a revocable living trust is that, in most cases, your estate won’t need to go through probate after you pass away. Instead, the trust remains operational because you have already named a trustee. 

Some advantages of avoiding probate

A revocable living trust can provide quick financial access for your family members in times of need. For instance, your family may not be able to afford the cost of your funeral on their own. By avoiding probate, the bank account remains open and accessible when your loved ones need the funds the most. 

Avoiding probate also grants your family some privacy at a time when they are grieving. When an estate enters probate, the proceedings are made public. One quick internet search can reveal information that you might prefer to keep private. However, trust agreements are never submitted to a court, which means the details of your estate remain private.  

Sometimes probate may still be necessary

Once your revocable living trust has been created, your assets are protected from probate. However, if you acquire additional assets and neglect to transfer them into the trust, these assets may enter into probate at the time of your death. In order to avoid this situation, you’ll need a unique kind of will known as a “pour-over will.” As the name implies, the will “pours” them into your trust at the moment of your passing. 

Understanding how a revocable trust can help you avoid probate can be tricky. That’s why it makes sense to seek assistance from someone who has experience with this type of trust.