PLANNING USING THE REVOCABLE LIVING TRUST
Estate Planning and Trusts Lawyers
A Revocable Living Trust, which is commonly used in our basic Estate Planning, is a Trust that can be modified or changed during your lifetime. Revocable Living Trusts are commonly used to shield assets from the cost and burden of going through the Florida Court supervised Probate Administration. While we do practice Probate Administration for those clients who are unable to avoid the process, we advise all of our to move their assets outside of the reach of the Probate Court.
A Revocable Living Trust works in conjunction with a Pour Over Last Will and Testament. The Pour Over Last Will and Testament designates beneficiaries for personal property and then states that all of the other assets (real property, intangible personal property, etc.) in the Estate (which have not been assigned to a Revocable Living Trust) be “poured over” into a Revocable Living Trust created along with the Pour Over Last Will and Testament.
The Grantor or Settlor and their spouse (if applicable) are usually the Original Trustees of the Revocable Trust, therefore retaining all control of the assets in the Trust during their lifetime. At incapacity, the spouse and/or children generally become the Trustee and handle your affairs for you depending on your particular situation. The Trust Agreement can further contain provisions for spousal support, support for your family, or even limits on family and/or spousal support if you have a blended family (second marriage, third marriage, etc.).
After your death, your beneficiaries can receive their bequests outright, or the bequests can remain in trust for a number of years only providing for the health, maintenance and support of the beneficiaries. The Revocable Living Trust also allows you to create age limits on the distributions of the Trust Property to minors, or beneficiaries who are under a certain age (ie: 30 years old) to ensure that your assets are not being squandered by beneficiaries who are not yet mature enough to receive such an inheritance.
As for assets, the Revocable Living Trust may hold assets including but not limited to: the title to your personal home (allowing you to retain a life estate and homestead), individual retirement accounts, life insurance proceeds, real estate properties, brokerage accounts, and checking and savings accounts. You can also hold S Corporation shares and most other business assets in your Revocable Living Trust as part of your business succession planning.
The Revocable Trust remains one of the most versatile planning tools in Estate Planning. It is an imperative and lucrative tool to use in your Estate Planning. Even if you solely use the Revocable Living Trust to keep your personal residence out of Probate, this tool could save you more than you could imagine and retain your hard-earned assets for your family.
Learn more about each specific Estate Planning strategy by visiting the links below:
- Planning using the Irrevocable Trust
- Planning using the Revocable Living Trust
- Last Will and Testament (Traditional and Pour Over Last Will)
- Incapacity Planning for Health Care and Financial Related Decisions
Contact our Law Firm to obtain a Complimentary Preliminary Consultation on how we can assist you with your Estate Planning, Probate, Legal, Business Law, Real Estate, Tax Planning and/or Tax Preparation needs.
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