I don’t want my heirs to have to go through the probate process. Is there another option, such as a living trust?

Probate Lawyer Sacramento, CA

Estate planning lawyers receive calls everyday about the probate process and how to avoid it. What they explain to them is that a living trust may be a good option to avoid probate.

That is the short, simple answer. In truth, whether or not you should spend the time and money to draw up a living trust depends on the circumstances of your situation. Some people could benefit from a living trust, and others will not. Then there are those who fall in between the two sides. To better understand your own situation, and whether it is best suited to a living trust, you should consult a trust lawyer.

I don’t want my heirs to have to go through the probate process. Is there another option, such as a living trust?

It’s understandable to not want your loved ones to have to go through the complicated process of probate, especially when they may be trying to cope with your loss. If you would like to lift this burden from them, a living trust might be an option. The following are a few ways that your assets and property can be transferred to your heirs without going through the probate process.

  • Distribute your assets as gifts prior to your death.
  • Place your assets in joint tenancy with the right of survivorship to your spouse, children, or other heir.
  • Create a pay on death bank account.
  • Name an heir on an insurance or retirement account.

A living trust can also be used for any asset, in addition to the above. It offers more flexibility than a will and gives you the chance to name alternative heirs just in case a beneficiary dies.

The Negative Side to a Living Trust

Living trusts are not perfect. They will take more time to set up, and require ongoing maintenance. Modifying them can be tedious and expensive. You will almost certainly need a trust lawyer to handle all of these tasks for you. A living will should also be in place, and acts as a backup to the trust.

Is a Living Trust Right For You

Trusts were once associated with wealthy people, but today people of many backgrounds choose a trust over a will. If the following apply to you, a trust might be a good idea:

  • You have a large estate valuing over $150,000
  • You expect to die in the next 10-15 years
  • You would like to leave very specific details to your heirs
  • You have an heir with special needs
  • You own a business

When You Are Married

If you are married and both you and your spouse plan to leave all or some of your assets to one another, it should be possible to avoid probate and not have a trust. However, if you are concerned about an impending divorce or separation, you may want to consult a probate lawyer Sacramento, CA trusts at Yee Law Group for further advice.