The answer is-IT DEPENDS!
A trust is a document created by you, which should disburse the assets you include in your trusts upon your death. With a trust, you appoint a trustee, who will be in charge of managing your assets according to the terms of your trust once you pass.
The greatest benefit in having a trust is that you may avoid the delay of your assets going through the probate process. If you have a valid will, your estate will generally pass according to your wishes in your will, but the process could take much longer versus having a trust. A trust allows you to pass your assets PRIVATELY versus the probate process which is done publicly. Your trust is a private document but a will may become a public record upon your death. Keep in mind, anything you do not title in your trust may be subject to the probate process.
With a trust you can disburse your assets to your heirs without the document becoming accessible to anyone not named in the trust. Another benefit of a trust is if you ever become too ill or incapacitated, your successor trustee can manage your affairs without having any involvement by the court.
On the down side, a trust can be a pricey investment so be sure to evaluate your financial situation before deciding to create one.
Here is a list of various types of trusts and their uses:
Living Trust: A document that you can create to pass your assets at your discretion without going through the probate process upon your death. Note, you can amend your living trust during your lifetime.
Special Needs Trust: You can create this type of trust which will leave assets to a loved one with a disability without the fear of them losing their Social Security Income or Medicaid. In this type of trust, your trustee would use the funds for the benefit of your loved one.
Spendthrift Trusts: This type of trust helps prevent an heir from recklessly spending the funds he or she may receive in a trust. This trust allows you to pick and choose when an heir will receive the funds or for a specific reason, like soccer lessons.
The types of trusts are not limited to the above list; you can contact our office to determine which type of trust might be the most beneficial to you and your needs.