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The Big 4 Benefits of a Trust Over a Will

 Posted on August 01, 2022 in Family Law Blog

wheaton estate planning lawyer Trusts are rapidly replacing wills as the main form of testamentary estate planning. You do not need to be a millionaire for using a trust to make sense. In terms of deciding who gets what when you have passed away, a trust can do everything a will can do while also allowing for some discretion and more gradual distribution. There are a number of benefits trusts offer that wills cannot. Unless you have minor children, you may not need a will at all if you establish a trust. There are also numerous different types of trusts that all offer distinct advantages and disadvantages. An attorney can help you understand all your options so that you can make a well-informed decision. 

Advantages of Using a Trust, Not a Will

Some of the benefits that have people turning to trusts as their primary testamentary document include: 

  • Gradual distributions - When you use a will, your beneficiaries get whatever gifts you have left for them in their entirety immediately. Depending on your beneficiaries and how they are with financial management, this could be a recipe for disaster. With a trust, you can have money slowly distributed to them over time instead of handing them a lump sum. 

  • Discretion - In your trust documents, you can choose a trustee whose judgment you trust and give them some discretion over making distributions. You could arrange for your trustee to make distributions only when they believe it is a good idea. Your trustee could, for example, choose to make a distribution to help your adult child start a business, or refuse to make a distribution to help them pay for a lavish vacation. 

  • Privacy and security - Wills become public records the second they are handed over to a probate court. Anyone who wants to see the details of your estate - or challenge your estate plan - can simply go look at the will. Trusts can be kept private, so that only beneficiaries and your trustee can see them. 

  • Avoiding probate - This is likely the single biggest reason that people use trusts now. Probate is a long, drawn-out, expensive, and complicated ordeal. It is the last thing your beneficiaries will want to deal with while they are grieving. It can also diminish the amount they will ultimately receive. Trusts avoid probate altogether, and distribution can start immediately. 

These are just a few of the benefits trusts can offer. Your attorney can tell you more about what types of trusts might be best in your personal situation. 

Call a DuPage County Estate Planning Attorney

A. Traub & Associates creates customized trust documents for each individual client. Our Wheaton estate planning lawyers will help you choose the right type of trust that will work best for you and your intended beneficiaries. Call 630-426-0196 for a free consultation. 



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