A living trust is a legal device to store and distribute property during your lifetime so that as you die intestate, your property doesn’t have to be divided among siblings or relatives. They also help avoid probate if the deceased did not leave sufficient assets. If you are married, your estate can be shielded from spouses and children if their names appear on the trust document.
Who needs a living trust?
Most people who own their own homes or have substantial savings need a living trust. A large portion of the population with estates worth over $4,000,000 will need to create one for estate taxes and/or probate reasons. Virtually everyone who owns stocks or bonds needs a living trust, as interest income is typically realized only after death by the trustee after they are distributed. The old “don’t forget to name your creditors” adage still applies to most estates.
When to get a living trust?
A living trust should be created as close to the end of life as possible to ensure that assets are provided to heirs in the most tax-efficient way. This may mean creating a new trust with your spouse or partner. The only dependents who need not be named on a new trust are financially independent children. Why do you need a living trust lawyer?
Living trusts are usually a major legal work product where taxes, accounting, and wealth preservation are in play. A living trust lawyer must be conversant with these issues and should have experience in the preparation of the documents. The fees for this service may be tax deductible. The creation of a living trust can become involved very quickly in the presence of multiple assets, real property, or family members who are not easily determined or located. The cost of a living trust lawyer for a typical estate can be recovered through reductions in income taxes and estate taxes.
What are the preparation and cost?
The fee for living trust preparation usually ranges from $1,000 to $10,000. The more assets involved in an estate, the more work required of the lawyer that is not covered by the initial fee. Annual accountings are also required to monitor asset changes over time to keep a trust up-to-date. The real estate and assets must be valued at death to determine capital gains taxes, which may increase the cost of the living trust. A living trust is also a very large legal work product that will require drafting, advising, and signing off on by a network of professionals. The lawyers who advise you on the drafting should not be part of the network responsible for your trust administration.
Living trusts are a major legal work product that creates tax advantages, provides for your family, and can decrease the total cost of your estate. living trust lawyer Los Angeles exists to help you in this process and needs to be more than just estate planning lawyers. A good living trust lawyer should have experience with asset management services and be able to use these techniques to lower your taxes.…