Exploring the Differences Between a Living Trust and a Will

living trust, will, lawyer estate planning Many people are familiar with the last will and testament, which is a signed legal document that establishes how a person’s property is to be divided upon his or her death. Wills also serve to designate a guardian for minor children. Drafting wills near Tracy and Manteca may be done at any point in a person’s lifetime–not necessarily only when a person is of advanced age or has a serious illness. Wills can be amended at any time that the individual wishes. However, wills are not the only component of the estate planning process.

Lawyers who specialize in estate planning can also help clients establish living trusts. As the term suggests, these structures govern property management during a person’s lifetime, as well as after the person’s death. Some people choose to establish a living trust because it can bypass probate of assets and prevent information about financial assets from becoming publicly accessible. A person can be named as the trustee of his or her own living trust. Upon becoming incapacitated or dying, a successor trustee takes over these responsibilities.

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