The revocable or “living” trust is a document that serves as a means for avoiding probate. It is governed by the Florida Statutes. Once upon a time (not too long ago!), people would come to us (lawyers) and request that we draft a Will in preparing their estate planning. Lawyers would most certainly do so, for just a couple of hundred dollars, and send you along with your estate documents (our firm does not do this!). If you were married, and a spouse predeceased the other, there was no issue. However, the issue occurred when the other spouse passed away, or if you were a single person who passed away. The beneficiaries of the Will would then come to the lawyers and the lawyers would prepare the beneficiaries for a long, expensive process called probate. And now, that couple of hundred dollars has just multiplied into a very large amount that will inevitably come out of your hard-earned money! We are here to explain to you how easy it really is to avoid this problem and that it only requires a few meetings to discuss your wishes for what you want.
What is a Trust?
A Revocable Trust is a document that you create that will serve to manage your assets during your lifetime and distribute the remaining assets after your death. A Revocable Trust means that you can change or amend the Trust at any time while you are alive. A Trust is a document that allows your beneficiaries to avoid Probate, as long as You ensure that you have properly “FUNDED” the Trust. In order to fund the Trust, you must title your assets in the name of the Trust. This is not a difficult thing to do, but a necessary thing.
Why do I need a Trust?
Again, once upon a long time ago, if you did not have A TON OF MONEY, you did not need a Trust. However, this is not true! It all depends on the asset(s) that you have.
In determining whether you need a Trust, these are the questions our firm will ask you:
- Do you own your property? If you do, YES, you need a Trust.
- Do you have any retirement plans in existence? If so, what are they (are they qualified plans or non-qualified plans)? The answer is determined based on your assets.
- Do you have a bank account? If YES, then you need to evaluate. Our firm will guide you in the right direction.
- Do you have simple and easy funeral plans in place? If so, the Trust is a document that will take care of all of your planning needs in the documents itself.
If you are unsure of some of the answers to these questions or you need additional information, please feel free to contact Aimee at 352-633-9791. We are here to assist you; if we are not able to answer your question, we will direct you to someone who can!!