There are many different types of Trusts, and they are all designed to achieve many different types of goals. There are also many ways to use various types of Trusts within an estate plan, and it most likely will be beneficial for you to learn which ones will help achieve your goals, according to The Daily Sentinel in “Are you prepared for threats to your estate?”
Generally speaking, your Will ensures that your probate assets go to the people you want to receive them. However, a basic Will may not achieve your goals. In comparison, the proper use of a Trust can protect your assets and help ensure that your assets are distributed to the people you want, when you want, and how you want. One of the goals of a well-drafted Trust is to protect you, your Estate and your loved ones from unwanted and unintended outcomes.
Here are a few ways Trusts can protect your legacy and your family:
- If your spouse predeceases you and you are incapacitated from a stroke, a fall or other illness, a Trust can be used to ensure that your assets are protected and used to take care of your needs.
- Seniors, especially those who have lost a spouse, tend to be vulnerable to scams from both people they know and strangers who connect with them through telephone or email. A properly designed Trust can place a layer of protection on the assets and require a second (or even third) person to release funds.
- If your beneficiaries have financial problems, get divorced, encounter legal issues, or develop drug or alcohol problems, a properly designed Trust can protect your Estate from being taken by others.
Every family is different, and every family presents its own unique circumstances. Everyone should meet with an experienced estate planning attorney and talk about how your estate plan can be designed to protect your family.
One last thought: if your family situation is so overwhelming that you feel like doing nothing, think again. If you don’t have a properly designed estate plan in place, your decades of work may be squandered, your children may have to spend more money in the court system than you would have wanted, and your legacy may disappear.
Reference: The Daily Sentinel (Dec. 1, 2018) “Are you prepared for threats to your estate?”