Many people can benefit from a trust, regardless of the amount of assets they have. A trust can save you from the probate process and allow you to distribute your assets as you see fit. Trusts can also ensure that your assets are managed and used for your benefit if you become disabled without requiring a court proceeding to get a conservator appointed.
A Trust Can Help Protect You From the Probate Process
A living trust can be used to help disburse assets and help your loved ones avoid going through probate. When your trust is set up, you place the assets of your choice into the trust which then belongs to the trustee. However, you can make changes to your trust agreement up until your death. When you have a trust set up correctly there will be no need for your loved ones to go through probate. An experienced estate planning attorney can help you ensure your trust is properly set up, allowing the assets in the trust to pass seamlessly to the named beneficiaries after you die.
Choose Which Type of Trust Works For You
People can have trusts set up for a variety of reasons and there are different trust options available to meet your needs. Think about what assets you want to distribute and how you want to distribute them. Here are some of the different trust options available to you:
Trust Under Will: If you have beneficiaries that are minors, a contingent trust under your will can allow assets to be held for the beneficiary until they are older and more capable of benefiting from your generosity.
Revocable Trust: This is an effective planning tool that allows you to designate beneficiaries, avoid probate, and keep your private matters private. You are able to decide how you want your assets to be managed during your lifetime and after your death. A revocable living trust can be revised at any time during your lifetime as long as you are able to do so.
Irrevocable Trust: Unlike a revocable living trust, irrevocable trusts cannot be changed once they have been established. You are still able to select your beneficiary/beneficiaries and determine when and how your assets are distributed. There are many types of irrevocable trusts, most of which are set up in connection with tax or Medicaid planning.
Do I Still Need a Will?
Even if you have a trust, you still need to have a will in place to catch any assets you owned individually at the time of your death and transfer them to your trust. There are also other things a will can do that a living trust cannot, such as naming a guardian in the event of your passing if you have minor children. Having both a trust and a will assures that your assets will be distributed how you want them to and to whom you want them to go to.
If you aren’t sure whether or not you need a trust agreement in New Mexico, we can help. Contact us today for a consultation to discuss your situation. Our experienced estate planning attorneys will let you know if a trust would be beneficial for you and which trust agreement would be ideal for your situation. They can also help you set up a will to accompany whichever trust agreement suits your needs.