Revocable Living Trusts are a good tool to begin to plan for your estate, but they are not the end-all be-all solution to estate planning.
- Revocable trusts compliment irrevocable trusts since they cannot do all that an irrevocable trust can do.
- Revocable trusts can have changes made during the life of the grantor, but cannot ensure a safe inheritance after the grantor's death.
- Revocable trusts are often used for probate, but can be rolled into an irrevocable trust prior to death with Kiss Trust.
What is a Revocable (or Living) Trust?
Revocable Living Trust (RLTs) are used in many ways as a start to estate planning, but along with a will, may only be the first component to a comprehensive estate inheritance plan. While RLT stands for a Revocable Living Trust, these trusts can also have other names such as revocable trusts, living trusts, or even family trusts. They are more durable than a will but offer less security than an irrevocable living trust. Some people couple an RLT along with their last will and testament due to the flexibility of such a structure. Wills can dictate how non-property items will be handled, such as the guardianship of children or how debts should be paid, while the RLT can avoid probate, ensure privacy or avoid ambiguities.
How It Works
A Revocable Living Trust can be created while the trust maker (grantor) is living and the trust can be changed during the lifetime of the trust maker. The trust maker will change the title of the property to herein become the property of the trust, such as real estate or automobiles. The trust maker can change the terms of the trust, but only while they are living.
What It Accomplishes
An RLT is widely used to avoid probate, the headache-laden process of court-supervised division of property after an estate owner’s death. Sometimes, the trust maker is also the trustee, but that proves to be a challenge in many cases. It can also be used to clearly explain the division of property in an inheritance and increase inheritance privacy upon death.
What It Does Not Accomplish
A Revocable Trust is not a one-stop solution to your trust needs or estate planning needs. A trust managing your assets after your death should be detailed and precise, instead of open-ended and revocable. This is why many trust makers elect to have the assets held with the RLT pour over into an irrevocable trust upon death to control by who, when and how the final estate may be used. A quick and easy solution for an irrevocable trust can be found at Kiss Trust.