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What Is a Living Trust?

There are two types of Living Trust: Revocable and Irrevocable.

A Revocable Living Trust may be amended or revoked by the person creating it (commonly known as a “trustor,” “grantor,” or “settlor”) at any time during the trustor’s lifetime, as long as the trustor is competent.

Once drafted and executed, an Irrevocable Living Trust may not be amended or revoked by the person creating it.

A trust is a written agreement between the individual creating the trust and the person or institution named to manage the assets held in the trust (the “trustee.”) In many cases, it is appropriate for you to be the initial trustee of your living trust, until management assistance is anticipated or required, at which point your trust should designate an individual or bank or trust company to act in your place. The terms of the trust become irrevocable upon the trustor’s death. Because the trust contains provisions which provide for the distribution o f your assets on and after your death, the trust acts as a substitute for your will, and eliminates the need for the probate of your will with respect to those assets which were held in your living trust at your death.

You should execute a will even if you have a living trust. That will is usually a “pour over” will which provides for the transfer of any assets held in your name at your death to the trustee of your living trust, so that those assets may be distributed in accordance with your wishes as set forth in your living trust.

In summary, in California, if you die without a Will or Living Trust, you are considered to have died “intestate.” If you die intestate and the value of your estate exceeds $100,000 and/or you own real property, your estate may be subject to Probate Administration. Your estate is distributed to your heirs in accordance with California law; which might not be in accordance with your wishes.

To schedule an appointment to have your Living Trust prepared, contact the
Law Offices of DeLonda K. Coleman at 916.422.1446.

For upcoming FREE Estate Planning Seminars, click on the following link: FREE SEMINARS.

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