Establishing a living trust is a highly effective way to protect the assets you may wish to leave to your family members and other such individuals when you pass on. With a living trust, your beneficiaries will receive their inheritances while avoiding the probate process.
A Trust can hold many types of assets. Your trust and assets is a topic a Woodland Hills, CA estate planning attorney at the Law Offices of Andrew Cohen will gladly discuss with you in greater detail. In the meantime, this overview will give you a general sense of the types of assets a living trust can protect.
They include, but aren’t necessarily limited to:
You may place various types of bank accounts in a living trust, including checking accounts, savings accounts, brokerage accounts, and more. Doing so gives you the freedom to exercise control over how the funds in these accounts may be distributed to your beneficiaries upon your passing.
Stocks, bonds, mutual funds, and other such types of investment assets can also be placed in a living trust. However, the process for placing such assets in a trust isn’t necessarily straightforward all the time. This is a task an estate planning lawyer can assist you with.
You can place real estate property in a living trust by preparing, signing, and recording a new deed. Your lender may require you to take certain additional steps before transferring a property to a living trust if you have a home loan mortgage. Coordinate with a lawyer who handles such matters to confirm the process runs as smoothly as possible.
You may own certain valuable personal property that you want to leave to your beneficiaries. You can transfer such items to a living trust.
If you assign these items to your living trust during your lifetime, they should bypass the probate process. On the other hand, you could create a “pour-over” will, which would transfer these assets to your trust after your passing. However, if you choose this option, your assets won’t avoid probate. Discuss this matter with a lawyer if you have questions about the pros and cons of each option.
There are two common ways to place a life insurance policy in a trust. While you’re alive, you can transfer ownership of your life insurance policy to the trust (and you may want to create a special trust for this very purpose). Or, you could essentially name your trust as your life insurance policy’s beneficiary.
This isn’t an exhaustive list. If a certain type of asset isn’t noted above, it may still be able to be held and managed in a living trust.
We recommend meeting with an experienced lawyer for more information. At the Law Offices of Andrew Cohen, a Woodland Hills estate planning attorney will help you better understand what can be placed in a living trust, how and why it should be done, and they’ll help you design an appropriate plan for yourself and your family. Get started today by contacting us online or calling us at 661-481-0100.