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Probate and How to Avoid It: The Revocable Living Trust

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While a Last Will and Testament is an important part of any estate plan, there's one main drawback to having all of your property pass under the terms of your will: The property must go through probate before your loved ones will be able to have access to it. Probate can take anywhere from six to nine months to over several years, which means that your family will have limited and often times no access to your assets until probate has been completed.

This is where a Revocable Living Trust comes into play. What is a Revocable Living Trust? It's a written legal agreement that sets forth how your property will be managed both while you're alive and then after you die. The part that deals with how your property will be managed while you're alive will contain your mental disability plan, and the part that deals with how your property will be managed after your death will contain the exact same terms that would have been written in your Last Will and Testament had you decided not to set up a Revocable Living Trust.

How Does a Revocable Living Trust Avoid Probate?

So how does a Revocable Living Trust avoid probate? Because if your assets are funded into the trust during your lifetime, then they won't need to be probated after your death. How do you fund your assets into the trust? For bank accounts and real estate, your name will be taken off of the asset and the name of your trust will be inserted in its place. For other assets, such as life insurance and retirement accounts, the trust will be named as a beneficiary of the asset. Once the trust is fully funded, you'll no longer own your assets – your trust will, and property that's owned by a Revocable Living Trust doesn't need to be probated after your death. Instead, the trust property can pass immediately and directly to your loved ones. 

Do you have questions? Contact a Redding probate attorney at Rupert Corkill today for a free consultation: 530-209-9593 

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