In California, probate can be a long, expensive, and public process. A revocable trust is an estate planning tool that is primarily used as a convenient and efficient means to avoid the probate process and distribute your assets quickly, efficiently, and privately upon your death. Today it is the most common way to distribute assets instead of using a will.
It is also referred to as a Living Trust because while you are living, you can continually make changes to the terms of the trust as long as you are alive and mentally competent. It can be modified, changed, or terminated (revoked) at any time without the approval of your beneficiary(ies).
The terms of your revocable trust can be changed depending on your wishes, allowing greater flexibility in your estate planning. You can also add and remove assets, add or remove beneficiaries, change your trustee, and generally make any number of changes as needed at any time.
Your revocable trust is funded by moving assets into it. Common assets would be real estate, financial accounts, life insurance, annuity certificates, personal property, and business interests.
This type of trust is a good way to make sure your heirs can properly handle their inheritance, particularly if they are young, incapacitated, or irresponsible with money. You can leave instructions that the money be given in certain amounts and at certain times such as birthdays and/or graduation from college and your trustee will carry out that distribution schedule.
Attorney Fesler is very experienced in creating Revocable Trusts and estate plans. Consult with our office today.