There are a number of reasons to consider creating a Trust rather than just a Last Will and Testament. For one, and this is generally the biggest draw, a Trust allows you to avoid probate. I won't go into too much detail on probate (this is a frequent topic of my blogs), but trust me when I say, it’s something you want to avoid. Probate can be expensive, time-consuming, and incredibly taxing on the emotions of your children.
Another lesser-known reason, however, why many of my clients prefer a Trust over a Last Will and Testament is that a Trust is not filed or registered publicly, with the court or otherwise. In short, no one (except you, your trustee, and your beneficiaries) will ever see it. Why would this matter?
First, filing a legal document publicly brings people “out of the woodwork.” Any arguable “interested” party (including creditors and disgruntled friends and family) can contest what you’ve decided to do with your estate. Second, you simply don’t want to “air your laundry” for the world to see, to learn what you owned and who you decided to give it to; it’s just none of their business.
If privacy is important to you, I’d love to talk with you about creating a Trust that will keep your affairs private and minimize the chance of disputes and claims against your estate. To schedule a complimentary consultation, contact me at Ross@RossSpanoLaw.com or (813) 244-7758.