Estate planning is different for everyone. Depending on your assets and your family situation, you may or may not require a revocable living trust. For North Carolina resident with relatively simple estate planning needs, a last will and testament and powers of attorney are usually sufficient.
A revocable living trust is an estate planning document that dictates how you want your assets to be handled during possible incapacity and after your death. Here are some reasons why you might want to consider setting up a revocable living trust:
#1: You have a lot of assets, including businesses
A person with complex financial assets may need a more powerful estate planning document to help with the continuation of their businesses. A revocable living trust allows you to appoint a trustee to manage your companies and other assets.
#2: You are concerned about privacy
A revocable living trust is a private document that does not go through the public probate process. Unlike wills, trusts are not visible to anyone who decides to look them up. The beneficiaries and trustees that you name specifically are the only people who are allowed to look at your trust.
#3: You want to prevent a will contest
A will is much easier to contest than a revocable living trust, so if you have concerns about a court battle, you may want to create a trust. Since trusts are concealed to everyone but your beneficiaries and trustees, legal conflicts over trusts are highly unlikely.
Consider the cost-benefit ratio
Setting up a revocable living trust or any other type of trust is more costly than a simple estate plan. However, the benefits may outweigh the costs if a trust makes sense for your unique situation. In some cases, trusts can have tax-saving benefits that make them worth the extra effort and expense.