Living Trusts vs. Probate

Benefits of  a Living Trust

The biggest benefit of a living trust is that distribution of your estate remains private. Who is to receive what and when remains confidential. You can direct that an asset transfers quickly, an income stream is setup, a college fund is assured, or assets remain held for investment.

In contrast, those who pass without any instructions or just a simple will, expose their affairs to public scrutiny. Court appointed probate attorneys will decide who is the next owner of your assets. It is not on your schedule, it is the overloaded court. Plus the estate will pay probate fees.

Your living trust is an essential planning tool to avoid probate. It can preempt challenges by heirs, save money and time as well as provide your estate with tremendous latitude on private distributions.

Eliminates Probate

Living Trust: Yes, of course! This is the very point of a living trust — to avoid the lengthy process of adjudicating the distribution of assets in a court of law. A simple will is not enough to avoid the fees, legal costs and the uncertainty of probate. Only a living trust can remove the burdens of probate from you heirs.

  • Probate — Of course not.
    Read More

    Probate is rarely a preferable process to the smooth and timely distribution of assets that occurs when assets are held in a living trust.

Privacy of Your Affairs

Living Trust: Yes! Privacy of your affairs and distribution of your assets remains confidential.

  • Probate — No, sorry.
    Read More

    Your assets and instructions are disclosed in court, open for public inspection and challenge.

Quick Distribution

Living Trust: Yes! Assets are immediately transferable upon death.

  • Probate — No, sorry.
    Read More

    Assets in limbo for a minimum 6­ to 18 ­months of probate before distribution.

Cost Controls

Living Trust: Yes! Eliminates probate attorney and court fees.

  • Probate — No, sorry.
    Read More

    Probate attorneys and legal fees determined by the court.

Consolidation of Assets

Living Trust: Yes! Brings assets located in different states under the laws of a single state.

  • Probate — No, sorry.
    Read More

    Assets in different states must go through probate in each respective state.

Cash Flow

Living Trust: Yes! Can give heirs immediate access to the cash accounts.

  • Probate — No, sorry.
    Read More

    Bank accounts and other similar assets are frozen until legal title is determined by the court.

Streamlined

Living Trust: Yes! Is lean in terms of accounting, administration, and avoids judicial review.

  • Probate — No, sorry.
    Read More

    Probate can take months, accounting costs and judicial review could be comprehensive.

Challenges

Living Trust: Yes! Greatly reduces the risk of challenges by disgruntled parties.

  • Probate — No, sorry.
    Read More

    Probate without a will is open to challenge by your angry children and step­children.