by Zac Majors
Will or Trust – Understanding What & Why
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many, be it businessmen or families, to consider ‘what ifs’ that were previously a non-issue. This includes family protection, business succession planning, legacy protection, and more. And one surefire way of safeguarding all these interests is via a will or a trust-based estate plan.
What Is a Will-Based Plan?
A will is basically just a document that legally explains your wishes after your death. It is the document that will explain how you want your legacy to be distributed after you’re gone. Some of the main functions that a will-based plan accomplishes are:
~ Appointing an executor
~ Naming a guardian
What Is a Trust-Based Plan?
In a trust, you create a legal vehicle which you transfer your assets to. Trust-based estate plans usually include wills, but will-based estate plans do not include trusts.
This is a great tool as a trust enables for robust planning while maintaining control of the trust estate. By creating a trust-based plan, you can:
~ Dictate where your assets go after death
~ Minimize potential federal estate taxes and legal fees
~ Protect assets from (beneficiary's) creditors, and more
Do I Need a Will- or a Trust-Based Estate Plan?
Your will indicates who you want to have access to your assets and how you want them distributed, but it does not keep your family out of court. In a trust, there is no need to involve the court. Your assets are in the trust, and the trust assets gets distributed to the beneficiaries according to the trust document; it’s that simple. There is a bit more work involved in creating the trust, but the work pays off in the future.
And then there’s the matter of privacy. Once a matter goes into court, it becomes a public matter. Your assets, concerns and more are listed in the public record. Probate can be expensive, time consuming, and can cause conflict amongst beneficiaries. Trusts maintain privacy.
If you are looking for someone to help you make a legacy, create a will- or a trust-based estate plan, or simply need some advice in the matter,
Centric legacy advisors are just a call away! Let us help you streamline things in your life and death.