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What is a Living Trust in an Estate Plan? 

 Posted on August 12, 2021 in Estate Planning

lombard estate planning lawyerThere are several options for people in Illinois who want to ensure their assets are protected and their wishes are fulfilled after their death. Among these is something called a “living trust,” and it is one of the most valuable asset protection instruments someone can have. Living trusts are versatile estate planning tools that offer flexibility when transferring assets to loved ones. Better yet, they save your estate from having to go through a time-consuming and expensive probate process

What is the Purpose of a Living Trust? 

A trust is a legal arrangement in which one person - the trustee - holds assets on behalf of another person, known as the beneficiary. A living trust has the advantage of remaining under the control of the trustee for as long as they live, giving the trustee great flexibility over how the assets in the trust are handled. A trustee of a living trust can sell, mortgage, or give away assets held in the trust at any time. Once the trustee passes away, a successor trustee appointed by the original trustee distributes the assets to the trust’s beneficiaries. 

The primary benefit of a living trust is that the grantor - the person who gives the assets to the trust - can also be the trustee. A grantor who sets up a living trust and serves as its trustee retains control over the ability to modify the terms of the trust and control the use of their property however they see fit.

Why Would Someone Use a Living Trust in Illinois?

A living trust is particularly helpful for those with high net worth estates who cannot use Illinois’ simplified probate process. Many states use a Uniform Probate Code, but Illinois does not, potentially making the probate process long and complex if an estate has a value of over $100,000. Probate court can be expensive and time-consuming, and delay the passage of valuable assets to loved ones. 

Contact a DuPage County Estate Planning Attorney

Planning for the future is one of the best ways to protect those you love. Those who create a living trust may avoid the expense and hassle of the probate process, saving their loved ones time and money. The experienced Lombard, IL estate planning lawyers with A. Traub & Associates can help you explore your options for ensuring your wishes are protected. Call us today at 630-426-0196 to schedule a confidential consultation. 



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