Do you really need a trust?
The estate tax is gone for all but the wealthy as the estate tax exemption has increased to beyond $11.4 Million dollars for each of us.
You may not be wealthy. You may not have businesses or multi-million-dollar assets to dispose of.
Therefore, do you really need to consider a trust?
First, it will avoid probate court proceedings and make the assets immediately available to the beneficiaries.
Next, it can assure that bills are paid, and financial matters are handled appropriately during an individual’s lifetime if he/she becomes disabled. More and more individuals are suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s.
If you are in a second marriage situation, it may be critical. A Will cannot allow for the care of your spouse until his/her death and then the balance to your own children. This can only be done within the provisions of a trust.
If you have children under the age of 30, or if they are older but are not financially savvy, it may be very important. This will permit the distribution of assets over time and possibly for specific purposes, eliminating the risk of the money being wasted.
If you have a child with special needs who is on government benefits, it is absolutely necessary. If such child receives a distribution of assets, it will disqualify him/her from the government benefits until the inheritance is exhausted.
While Trusts are more expensive to establish, it is better not to be penny wise and pound foolish.