Most individuals understand the importance of having a will. When the day arises that they pass, their assets and personal items are passed on to their loved ones. Whether it is personal property, real estate, bank accounts, investments, household items, collectibles or other assets, their assets are divided upon death.
However, when somebody dies, the will has to be submitted to the probate court. The probate court then assesses the viability of the will to ensure it meets the legal requirements, ensures a personal representative is appointed and that the will is properly administered as the decedent desired and according to the law.
The reality is the probate process can be long and cumbersome. In some instances, it can take many months or longer. It can also be expensive in terms of hiring a lawyer to ensure this process is carried out, that notice is published in a legal periodical, taxes are paid, and that everything is done correctly.
Why A Revocable Trust Instead?
Instead of just having a will, most ought to consider having a revocable trust instead with a pour-over will. A revocable trust can dispose of assets in much the same way as will with one difference.
The difference is the disposition of assets through a revocable trust can be accomplished without the oversight of the probate court. In this way, the distribution of the decedent’s assets can occur much quicker and with no court oversight. Often, the disposition of assets can happen with less attorney fees, red tape, and minutia.
How to Set Up A Revocable Trust?
Setting up a revocable trust is not complicated. It requires the services of an attorney to draft the revocable trust. In addition to the revocable trust, a pour-over will is drafted. A pour-over will is much like a normal will–only it pours over all the assets into the trust upon the death of the decedent.
Another key component to having a revocable trust is titling other assets into the revocable trust after it is setup. The process of titling assets in the number of a revocable trust is commonly called “funding” the trust.
Assets that are often titled in the trust include real estate, vehicles, bank accounts, investment accounts, life insurance, collectibles and other assets. With liquid accounts like bank accounts, investment accounts and life insurance accounts, the assets are often titled in the trust through a payable on death or transfer on death designation.
What’s the Downside of Having A Revocable Trust?
There is not really a downside to having a revocable trust. A revocable trust keeps assets out of probate, speeds up the delivery of assets to beneficiaries, cuts red tape and can simplify the process. It can also do various other things, including have a trustee manage the assets of a minor until they become old enough to have all the outsets outright.
To the extent there is a downside, an estate plan with a revocable trust can cost more in lawyer fees to setup. It can also be a little arduous for many to title assets in the revocable trust. Some individuals can often forget to title their assets in the revocable trust, which can cause their assets to end up in the probate court. But all things considered, a revocable trust is a no-brainer for most.
If you are interested in having a revocable trust setup, you can contact Stange Law Firm, PC online or 855-805-0595. We have estate planning lawyers in Indiana and other states that can help.