A will and a trust serve the same function: They provide for your family after your death. However, there are some differences that may make trusts advantageous in some circumstances. If you have substantial property and assets, it can be much more beneficial to your heirs to provide for them in a trust rather than by will.
What is a Trust?
A trust is a legal arrangement that specifies how your assets and property are managed both during and after your lifetime. A trust is a good option for those who have considerable assets, since it offers some protection from excessive estate taxes. The person creating the trust is called the settlor or grantor. The grantor transfers property and assets into the trust, where they are held during the grantor’s lifetime. There are two main types of trusts, including revocable and irrevocable. A revocable living trust allows you to change or revoke it at any time and for any reason. When you pass away, a revocable trust automatically becomes irrevocable.
Advantages of Trusts
There are several important advantages of utilizing a trust. One of the most significant advantages is that a trust allows your heirs to avoid probate. The probate process can be lengthy and contentious, but you can prevent problems by putting your property into a trust. Another advantage of a trust is that it allows you better control to distribute your assets. If an heir is a minor, under the age of 18, a trust is an ideal way to provide for the minor’s expenses.
You can control how the money is to be spent and you appoint a trustee to oversee distribution of funds from the trust in accordance with your wishes. Trusts, unlike wills, are private and therefore they are not accessible to the general public. A trust is an easier, faster, and less expensive alternative to a will. It allows you to pass your assets to your beneficiaries quickly and easily.
How to Establish a Trust
It is essential to follow the specific Wisconsin trust laws and guidelines in place for establishing a trust. An experienced Wisconsin will and trust attorney will assist you in drafting and executing a trust agreement that will follow the law and meet your needs. Make sure that you establish the proper type of trust for your purposes. If you create a revocable trust, you can make changes to it whenever you please. Once you place property into an irrevocable trust, you will not be able to modify the trust. It is best to seek guidance from a skilled Wisconsin trust attorney to assist in setting up your trust. You need to ensure that the trust does everything that you expect and that it follows the law so that it cannot be challenged later. Meet with one of our skilled attorneys to discuss the options for your will and trust and to get answers to your questions. Contact Moen Sheehan Meyer, Ltd. today to schedule an initial consultation.