Revocable Living Trust Lawyers in Astoria Looking Out for Your Beneficiaries
Everyone should draft their Last Will and Testament if they want to ensure that they are leaving their assets to their intended beneficiaries. However, it is important to understand that your will does not and will not go into effect until the event of your death. At this point, the will enters probate court, where work will be done to decide the validity of the document. After that, debts are settled and any remaining assets are distributed to the beneficiaries named in the will.
Did you know that there are ways to see to it that assets are distributed to your beneficiaries and heirs before your death?
With the creation of a revocable living trust, you will be able to put assets into the trust and be in control of how and when those assets are distributed to you and your beneficiaries. You may update the terms of the living trust at any time and even change the named beneficiaries. This way, your estate planning includes looking out for your beneficiaries in the here and now instead of just planning for after you’re dead and gone.
To learn more about the advantages of adding a revocable living trust to your estate plan, please contact the attorneys of Ortiz & Ortiz, LLP. Our law firm has been providing legal services and estate planning guidance to clients in Astoria, NY for decades, and we would be proud to help you with your questions and concerns.
What Are the Different Types of Living Trusts in NYC?
Just as there are many types of trusts in general, there are also different kinds of living trusts for you to choose from.
A revocable living trust allows the trust’s creator, also known as the grantor, to remain in complete control of the trust over the course of their lifetime. With this oversight, the trust’s creator becomes the trustee, allowing them to make decisions regarding the distribution of assets and alterations to the trust. However, this form of living trust does not come with the same asset protection and shelter from estate tax that an irrevocable living trust.
An irrevocable living trust name a trustee other than the trust’s grantor to take over the administration and management of the trust. The assets, even if they are distributed over time, are the lawful property of the beneficiaries named by the trust. As such, the trust’s creator is not on the hook for estate taxes from the trust’s assets, and the assets cannot be seized by creditors if the trust’s grantor ever finds themselves in financial trouble. However, the trust’s grantor has no control over the trust once it is officially executed, meaning that all assets could be untouchable to them.
What Assets Commonly Go into Revocable Living Trusts?
In order for a living trust to be effective and useful to anyone, it must be properly funded, with proper assets transferred into it.
Common Assets to Include in Trusts Include:
- Financial accounts including stocks, bonds, checking accounts, cash, and annuities.
- Life insurance and other benefits.
- Personal valuables, such as jewelry, diamonds, limited edition art and collectibles, family heirloom items, instruments, and antique furniture.
- Real estate including land, commercial properties, secondary homes, and property owned out-of-state.
- Safe-deposit boxes.
- Vehicles, if they are rare collector’s items that you’d like to keep out of probate court, are also valuable additions to a trust.
Items That Typically Are Not Placed in Trusts Include:
- Active bank accounts, as these may be needed for paying off monthly bills and other necessary financial obligations.
- Health savings accounts.
- Retirement accounts, like your 401(k) or IRA.
- Vehicles that are of the everyday variety need not be included in a trust, as they do not normally enter probate unless they are of some collectible value.
Does a Living Trust Enter Probate After the Grantor’s Death in New York?
No. One of the primary benefits of putting assets into a trust instead of a will is that those assets will not need to pass through probate.
This means that, after the eventual death of the trust’s creator, the remaining assets of the revocable living trust are distributed to the trust’s beneficiaries without the extended wait times that typically go with probate court.
In New York, the probate process can take several months or sometimes over a year in some cases. This process can also be costly, coming with it court filing bills and other expenses. While probate court has its uses, it may be wise to avoid it when possible.
Contact the Revocable Living Trust Attorneys of Ortiz & Ortiz, LLP to Discuss Your Estate Planning Goals
Setting up a strong estate plan requires diligent attention to the details of every related document. To ensure that your living trust is properly executed with the state of New York, it is highly advisable to seek out the legal guidance of an experienced estate planning attorney.
The law firm of Ortiz & Ortiz, LLP has decades of experience serving the clients of Astoria and the surrounding five boroughs of New York. We pride ourselves on providing dedicated, compassionate legal care to our clients and their families.
If you have any questions about what goes into the creation of a revocable living trust in New York, please contact our law office. Our legal team would be happy to sit down with you and discuss your legal options. Contact us at 916-796-1858.