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If you’ve ever thought about making a living trust, you may have some questions. But first, let’s define the benefits of a living trust.

A living trust allows you to keep control over the trust property until death which is then turned over to your chosen successor trustee to distribute the trust property according to your wishes. This helps to avoid probate which results in a faster and easier distribution to your beneficiaries without the added costs often associated with probate. In addition, since its provisions stay confidential, compared to a last will and testament, which becomes a matter of public record, it also maintains your privacy.

Now, let’s delve into some common myths about a living trust.

Myth #1: Living trusts only benefit beneficiaries

In reality, a trust allows for easier handling of your affairs if you become incapacitated, and makes a difficult and stressful time much easier for your loved ones that are left to care for your affairs.

Myth #2: Living trusts are only for the rich.

It’s true that most wealthy people set up trusts, however, it doesn’t mean that this option is only for the rich. Many people with average incomes find living trusts very beneficial; especially those with children or dependents.

Myth #3: Once funds are in a trust, they’re inaccessible.

It’s called a “living” trust, which means all funds and assets can be made as accessible as you want, to you or to whoever you choose. You can even structure the trust so that everything is accessible to only you until your death.

Myth #4: Creating a living trust is complicated and expensive.

While it’s true that setting up a trust may cost a bit more up front compared to a last will and testament, the cost savings later can make up for these expenses in the long run.

Myth #5: A will does the same things as a trust.

Actually, a living trust has greater flexibility. It allows you to give your money and property to those you care about while still protecting it. For example, if you have beneficiaries who you feel are not able to handle large sums of money on their own yet, are struggling with debt or an unstable marriage; a living trust may be the perfect instrument for you.

Have a discussion with estate planning attorney AmySue Taylor. Call 614.436.2800