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Answering Common Questions on Living Trusts

A living trust transfers property into the hands of a trustee, who then holds the assets for the use of a third-party beneficiary. Although living trusts are common, many individuals have questions regarding how these documents work and may benefit their estate planning efforts.

What are the advantages of making a living trust?

The most desired advantage of creating a living trust is that the assets included in the trust do not have to go through probate court in the event of your death. Because probate could last for months, avoiding the process through a trust allows your beneficiaries to gain access to their inheritance much more quickly. When a trust is in place, the trustee only has to hand over the assets owed to the beneficiary, a process that typically takes a few weeks.

Is creating a living trust expensive or difficult?

Typically, creating a living trust takes about the same amount of time as forming a will. You’ll want to work with an attorney to ensure that the terms and processes listed in your trust are enforceable and in line with Florida law. Have a discussion with your lawyer about the potential costs for establishing a living trust and the efforts that will be involved. 

Is a living trust made public after a death?

A living trust is not public and will not be made public after a death. In fact, through a living trust, you are able to completely remove certain assets from being made public during the probate process.

Is a will needed if a living trust is in place?

Yes, a will is still needed to legally pass down property and assets not included in your trust, to name an executor of your estate and/or to appoint a legal guardian for minor children.

For more information on whether a living trust may be right for your estate planning efforts, consult the skilled Florida attorney at the Charles Law Offices.

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