Do you need a will if you have a living trust?

A living trust serves a similar purpose as a will. It is a legal document where you designate who you leave your property to. A living trust compared to a will is that property left through a trust does not have to go through probate court after your passing.

A will becomes active after one’s death, whereas a trust is active the day it is created. If you have a trust, you should still make a will because there can be a couple of advantages of having both.

A trust does not always include everything you own. A will covers your children and if you want to name a guardian for them before adulthood. If something happens to you or your spouse and you have minor children with no appointed guardian in a will, the court will appoint someone on their own. If you do not have minor children, having a will can be helpful in the event that you forget to list certain assets on your trust. Even if you have a trust, you should still have a will for any assets that the trust does not cover. A pour-over clause in the will can save the day when the creator of a trust neglects to or improperly transfers all of their property into the trust. It is important to remember probate will come out of the shadows if your assets are not properly transferred into the trust or your trust is not properly funded.

A will can be used to forgive debts owed to you, something that is not done in a trust document. A trust can include provisions to care for your estate in the event that you are unable to. If your house is titled in the name of your trust, the trustee can sell the home and use the money for your care, which would not work in a will because you are still alive.

If you want to learn more about the difference between wills and trust, please give us a call today at (206) 408-8158, we would be happy to assist.

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19803 1st Avenue S.
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Normandy Park, WA 98148

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