Yes! And here are five good reasons why:
With a revocable living trust, you will retain control over your assets while alive and after you are deceased. Other estate-planning documents, such as wills, only come into effect once you are deceased. With a living trust, you control your assets now and in the future. If, unfortunately, something were to happen to you that left you in a state where you could no longer control your own affairs (sickness for example), the living trust would direct a trustee (of your choosing) to speak and act on your behalf. Without the living trust, there may be complicated court proceedings to determine who will be in control of your livelihood and affairs. Worse, a court may appoint a person you do not want to control your health, assets, and affairs.
- Saving Money
Less of your hard-earned money will go toward paying court and attorney fees. The state charges a fee for having to settle estates through the probate courts (there are additional fees as well). You can avoid paying these higher fees by planning ahead and working with a trusted attorney to establish a living trust for a fraction of the cost.
- No Delays
Distribution of the estate assets to your beneficiaries (those heirs you have left the assets to) will occur upon your death without delay. If you decide to use a will, (or worse, allow the state probate system to settle your estate), to distribute your assets, it could take as long as two years for the beneficiaries to receive their assets. Again, by using a living trust, you can avoid the wait-time that usually occurs while the courts settle your affairs. If you have a will, for example, that is disputed, there is no telling how long the court proceedings may take to settle the estate; those whom you care about most will have to wait in limbo without access to any of the assets until the courts have worked through the matter.
- Investment Flexibility
The trustee (the person you designate to take care of your affairs) will have the maximum flexibility to take the necessary action with your assets. If there are potential investment opportunities that will increase the value of your portfolio, the trustee will have the necessary authority to buy or sell assets to get the most out of your money. Other estate documents do not provide the same flexibility and you may lose potential money-making opportunities just because your estate document will not permit the trustee to make a timely investment.
- Easily Make Changes
A living trust provides you with the maximum flexibility to make desired changes to your estate plan. If you decide you want to add or remove assets, or determine that you no longer desire your assets to be held in the trust, this can easily be done. To amend or revoke a will, (or other estate instruments), is a more complicated process. There is no telling what challenges life may throw your way next, the living trust will be your best tool to meet those challenges and secure what matters most.