The news is full of stories about celebrities dying without a will or trust in place to handle the distribution of assets to the heirs left behind. One of the most high-profile stories right now is that of the legendary artist Prince, who left more than $300 million in assets and had no will or trust to handle these assets. Everyone should have a valid, current will on file, and most people should also have a trust in place. The following three facts may dispel your misconceptions about trusts.
Living Trusts Are Only for the Rich
While wealthy individuals can definitely benefit by having a trust in place to handle their assets while they are alive and after their death, trusts aren’t just for the wealthy. Anyone with any amount of assets can set up a trust to ensure these assets are distributed as they wish, even if they become incapacitated or die unexpectedly. Individuals with minor children, or dependents who are elderly or disabled should also have a trust in place to care for these dependents.
Living Trusts Are Only for the Elderly
No one knows for sure when they are going to die; death is typically a surprise. Most people hope to live to a ripe old age, but this is not guaranteed. A trust is beneficial for everyone regardless of age. The trust will ensure that the individual is cared for no matter what happens. The trust will also distribute assets after the person’s death as they wish them to be distributed.
Living Trusts Are Too Expensive
It is not inexpensive to establish a trust. However, there are ways to cut costs, such as having a family member or trusted friend serve as the trustee, instead of your family law attorney. The cost to establish the trust is miniscule compared to the cost of probate if your estate must go through probate after you die. The emotional cost to your heirs is exponential, as well.