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Living Trust

California Living Trust

  • Gives the trustee (often yourself) the right to control and manage all assets placed in trust.
  • Instructs the trustee to manage all assets for your benefit during your lifetime.
  • Names beneficiaries, including heirs, relatives, friends or charitable organizations, whom are to receive assets from the trust upon your death.

Source: State Bar of California

A living trust can be a great way to secure your estate and prepare for its administration and distribution after your death. Having spent a lifetime of hard work to build you estate, using a living trust offers.

For many, establishing a Living Trust is an excellent way to protect an estate and ensure it is ultimately dispersed in accordance with their wishes. Unlike a Will, an estate trust also permits asset distribution without going through the Probate Court process, which can be a costly, time-consuming and public way to settle your estate. The Los Angeles living trust lawyers at Howard Law offer confidential consultations to anyone considering a Living Trust in the Los Angeles area, including Santa Ana, Riverside and Anaheim.

In a living trust, your assets such as real estate, bank accounts and investments, are placed in a trust which you can control during your lifetime. You may also name a successor, who will act as a trustee and manage the assets if you are ever unable or unwilling to manage the trust. Most California living trusts are established as revocable trusts, or grantor trusts, and may be amended or dissolved by you, should you ever wish to do so and are still competent to make such decisions.

Not everyone will benefit from a living trust. Young married couples with few assets, others who will have simple estates, or those who want court supervision over the administration of their assets may not benefit from a living trust. In general, the greater the value of the assets, and the more complex the estate, the more a Living Trust can play an important role. In particular, those with significant real estate holdings, may benefit from a Living Trust.

Once a Living Trust is established, it must be funded by transferring your assets into trust ownership. Real estate, bank accounts, investment accounts and other assets need to be transferred to the trust to avoid probate. Additionally, life-insurance beneficiaries and beneficiaries on retirement plans, 401k and IRA plans, and other assets may be transferred to the trust. However, seeking the advice of a Los Angeles trust attorney is advisable to ensure proper transfer and awareness of possible tax implications.

Additionally, those with a Living Trust still need a Will. Assets that are in your name at death, and not in the trust or some other form of transferable ownership, will still be governed by the contents of a Will.

Living Trusts can be a powerful estate planning tool but are best established as part of a comprehensive plan for the administering of your estate. For a confidential appointment to discuss your options, contact the Los Angeles estate planning lawyers at Howard Law for a confidential appointment to discuss a comprehensive plan for your estate.

CALIFORNIA LIVING TRUSTS - Call (800) 872-5925 - Howard Law