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Wills and Trusts

SMOOTHING THE TRANSITION

Wills and trusts are both essential estate planning tools that can help ensure that your assets are distributed according to your wishes after you pass away. However, there are some key differences between the two that are important to understand.

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Wills

A will is a legal document that outlines your wishes for the distribution of your assets after you die. It can also appoint guardians for minor children and name an executor to manage your estate. One of the main benefits of a will is that it is relatively simple and inexpensive to create. However, there are some drawbacks to relying solely on a will. For example, a will must go through probate court, which can be a lengthy and costly process. Additionally, a will only becomes effective upon your death, so it cannot help you manage your assets while you are alive.

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Trusts

A trust, on the other hand, is a legal arrangement in which a trustee manages assets on behalf of a beneficiary. There are many different types of trusts, but they all share some common benefits. For example, a trust can help you avoid probate court, which can save time and money. Additionally, a trust can help you manage your assets while you are alive, which can be particularly beneficial if you become incapacitated. Finally, a trust can also provide tax benefits and greater flexibility in how your assets are distributed.

There are some key differences between wills and trusts that are important to consider. For example, a will only becomes effective upon your death, while a trust can be effective during your lifetime. Additionally, a will must go through probate court, while a trust generally does not. Finally, a will is a public document, while a trust is typically private.

 

In general, the choice between a will and a trust will depend on your individual circumstances and goals. If you have a relatively simple estate and are primarily concerned with ensuring that your assets are distributed according to your wishes, a will may be sufficient. However, if you have a more complex estate, want to avoid probate court, or want greater control over how your assets are distributed, a trust may be a better option.

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