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Is a living trust always necessary?

You may have heard that you need to set up a living trust, but it may not always be necessary. Although it's a good idea to cover all your legal bases, sometimes, not all legal documents are necessary for all people.

A living trust is one way to leave your beneficiaries property without requiring them to go through probate court. You may not need a living trust if you have a certain marital status or a small estate.

A living trust does take more time to set up and requires maintenance. It's difficult to alter it in the future. These trusts also cost over $1,000 to create in many cases. If you are under the age of 55, it may be in your best interest to have a will instead of a living trust. Since laws and techniques change, it's a better bet to wait until you're older to consider a living trust.

The size of your estate matters, too. If you have a large estate, there is a higher risk of losing your assets in probate. For those who have many assets and a high net worth, a living trust nearly guarantees avoiding probate and helps save a large amount of money. If you own businesses or assets that could be affected if they were unable to be run during probate, then a living trust makes sense.

If you're unsure of whether or not a living trust is necessary in your case, your attorney can help you decide. It may be a good idea to have a living trust, will or both.

Source: FindLaw, "Why Setting Up a Living Trust May Be Unnecessary," accessed May 15, 2017

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Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates

Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates LLC
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