Although most Florida residents have any number of questions when they start looking into the estate planning process, trusts are probably one of the top issues. Estate planning can seem difficult enough before a person even starts to think about whether or not trusts might be useful. Understanding some of the basic concepts about trusts in estate planning can help.
For starters, there are two basic types of a trust: “revocable” trusts and “irrevocable” trusts. A revocable trust, simply put, is one that can be changed or canceled altogether by the person who establishes the trust. An irrevocable trust, on the other hand, usually cannot be altered or canceled after it is created.
In a typical trust, the estate planner creates the trust by transferring ownership of some type of property or assets to the trust – the trust, as a legal instrument, becomes the owner. The trust is then operated by a “trustee” for the benefit of a designated “beneficiary.” There can be significant advantages to including a trust as part of an estate plan, including the fact that assets in a trust often avoid the probate process, and there can also be tax advantages as well.
But, the usefulness of a trust will need to be determined on a case-by-case basis. No two estate plans are alike, even though there may be similarities. At our law firm, we understand that Florida residents need answers to their own unique family and financial circumstances. If trusts might be beneficial in your situation, they might be worth a look. For more information about how our law firm attempts to help Florida residents who are looking into these legal issues, please visit the estate planning overview section of our website.