What is Trust and why get one?
Why get a will if you’re not going to make sure that your assets are taken care of the way you want them to be? Consider a trust.
When asking “Why Get a Will?”you may run across the word trust.
Just saying the word, trust, makes you think of people with integrity who can be counted on to carry out a task.
In legal terms, a trust is not so different. When one person (a trustee) looks after a gift or part of an estate for another person it is called a trust. Three parties are involved: the person who makes a will (testator), the trustee, and the party for whom the trust is held. Essentially, you trust someone to hold property for the benefit of another. The beneficiaries of a trust are often the persons most considered when thinking, “Why get a will?”
If, after answering, “Why get a will?” you have decided to make one, you may wish to have a trust included in your will. If you have children who are minors, for instance, at the time of your death and are therefore unable to hold property or manage finances, you can assign a trustee to do this for them. Handicapped children can also benefit from a trust. A trust must specify who the beneficiary is and exactly what property is to be transferred.
Some people chose to transfer all of their estates through a living trust instead of a will. So, what is the difference between a trust and a will? Why get a will over a living trust?
When a living trust is made, the assets can be managed by the creator as long as they are able. If they are not, an alternate trustee takes over. They can use the trust to pay bills, buy personal goods, and provide living essentials for the creator of the trust. When the person who created the trust dies, the trustee distributes remaining assets to specific individuals. It is good to understand this when considering the question, “Why get a will?”
A will is only effective after its maker dies. The maker names heirs and lists what they will receive. Wills can contain trust for certain heirs, such as minor or disabled children.
A living trust can be beneficial for a number of reasons.
A living trust does not have to go through probate court. This can be beneficial because probate is open record and business can be made public. Probate can also be expensive. “Why get a will?” can become a valid question after you know what a living trust can do for you.
Why get a will if a living trust can do all that? Having a will is still a good idea. Property can be easily forgotten when making a trust. There are provisions for this if you chose to have both. A “pour over will” can allow for anything not included in a trust to “pour” into the trust.
You can certainly benefit from asking the question, “Why get a will?” whether you decide on a living trust over a will or add a trust for certain loved ones to a will. They can both help provide peace of mind for you and your family.