How to Set Up a Living Trust — Starting Today

A living trust can be one of the most valuable legal entities you ever create. Why? Because it gives you a large degree of control over your own estate.

But let’s back up here and explain what a living trust is all about. Essentially, a living trust is a trust for estate planning that you create while you’re still alive (as opposed to a trust that is created with your money upon your death). When you put money into this trust, you keep it away from the rest of your estate to avoid heavy estate taxes upon your passing, thus protecting money and assets from the tax man while leaving as much property behind as possible for your loved ones to use and enjoy.

Returning to our original theme, a living trust is one of the best ways you can exercise control over your own property. But if you want to get started today, it’s time to learn a little bit more about what exactly a living trust is, and what it can do for you.

Do You Need a Living Trust?

One of the first questions to ask yourself today is whether or not you really need to open a living trust. Some people will use living trusts as ways of taking care for loved ones with special needs – the trust can continue to use the money in that person’s name throughout their life.

But if you don’t have a lot of money or assets to leave behind, you may want to consider what you would do with a living trust. Sometimes it’s more efficient, for example, to simply leave a house behind to a loved one in your last will and testament – and an estate planning lawyer can help you do exactly that.

Ask yourself if you have the resources and needs to set up a living trust, and you’ll be done with your first step on your way to setting up an effective legal entity for your children’s future.

Opening a Living Trust

One of the most efficient ways for you to open a living trust is to have an attorney handle all of the filing for you – but you might be able to download legal forms to help get the ball rolling on your own. If it’s your first living trust, you’ll probably want to consult with a lawyer to make sure that all of the details are handled well.

Estate planning lawyers are particularly effective with living trusts and will be able to give you spot-on advice for opening them. They can also review any of the forms you’ve used on your own to make sure that what you’re doing on paper is exactly what you intended to do. Once all of your paperwork is squared away, the filing can be handled right away, and soon you’ll have a living trust established for the future care of your loved ones. It can be that easy.

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