Legal Question in Wills and Trusts in Maryland

Does the kit include form documents for creating a living trust that complies with the relevant laws of the subject states?

Asked on 2/16/11, 9:50 am

2 Answers from Attorneys

Cedulie Laumann Arden Law Firm, LLC

Thanks for your post. It is unclear what "kit" you are referring to but creating a living trust involves various issues which are best undertaken by a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction. Living trusts have the benefit of avoiding probate IF prepared properly and IF necessary transfers to the trust take place, but they are not a one-size-fits-all document and not appropriate in all circumstances.

Among other things an attorney will want to know your goals / reasons for wanting to create a living trust (do you have property in multiple states? a second marriage with children from earlier unions?), whether your total assets may be at risk for federal or state inheritance tax (which is different than probate tax), how property is titled, family dynamics and so forth.

While it may be possible to have a licensed attorney review documents you prepared or purchased it may make more economic sense to have an attorney review your overall situation, including any need for tax planning, and devise a solution that makes sense for you. For instance, a poorly prepared living trust without other planning documents can leave a client worse off than a basic but well prepared will, power of attorney and deed. You may wish to consider setting up an initial consultation at which point you could decide whether or not you want attorney prepared documents.

This post is not legal advice but I do hope it helps guide you in planning decisions.

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Answered on 2/16/11, 10:32 am
Richard Abraham Abraham & Bauer, LLC

Law is no different than any other facet or area of one's life. Buying a kit does not provide full and/or in most instances proper representation. Furthermore, some of the nationally advertised companies that sell kits etc. have been sued in may states. So if one purchases a $5.00 pair of shoes, chances are that at some point they will hurt one's feet.

The above answer is provided solely for informational purposes and does not create an implied or expressed attorney-client relationship.

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Answered on 2/16/11, 2:45 pm

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