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Monday, July 15, 2019

Creating a Living Trust as Part of Your Michigan Estate Plan

Effective estate plans have many components. And while most people are familiar with wills and trusts, few understand the benefits of living trusts. Living trusts have many benefits, including flexibility and the avoidance of probate. If you're interested in learning about how a living trust can improve your estate plan, please review the information below and contact an experienced Michigan estate planning attorney for additional details on the estate planning process. 

What is a living trust?

A living trust is a type of trust established during a grantor’s (a person who creates a trust) lifetime that can be changed or revoked by the grantor. This differs from an irrevocable trust, which can’t be altered by a grantor. Following the creation of a living trust, the grantor may serve as its trustee. The grantor is also allowed to receive assets from the trust as a beneficiary. However, while a living trust protects trust property from probate and allows the grantor freedom to alter its terms and move assets, it doesn’t offer as much protection to assets as an irrevocable trust. 

The benefits of a living trust 

Living trusts have many benefits. One of the main benefits of creating a living trust is that after the grantor of the trust passes away, the assets in the trust pass directly to beneficiaries without going through the probate process. A living trust also allows a grantor who becomes incapacitated to remain a beneficiary of the trust. In addition, a living trust gives the grantor control over how trust assets are distributed, and it can be created in a way that protects trust assets from certain beneficiary creditors. Finally, unlike a will, which must go through the probate process, a living trust isn’t a public document, so this allows the grantor to keep its contents confidential and out of the public domain. 

Additional options 

A living trust can be a fantastic estate planning tool. However, there are additional measures you can take to provide for your beneficiaries and protect your hard-earned assets. In order to thoroughly plan for your estate, it is essential that you meet with an experienced Michigan estate planning attorney to examine and discuss the different aspects of your estate and your estate planning options.

Contact our Michigan estate planning attorney today  

Given the multiple advantages of including a living trust in your estate plan, we recommend that you discuss this option with an experienced Michigan estate planning attorney as soon as possible to determine the ways in which it may be beneficial to you. In addition, a Michigan estate planning attorney can assist you will all aspects of estate planning, including drafting a will, choosing an executor, or simply beginning the estate planning process. If you’d like to begin planning for your future, please contact one of our experienced Michigan attorneys for a consultation.

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