When it comes time for you to sit down and create your estate plan you will need to make a number of important decisions, many of which relate to your assets and how you wish them to be handled now and after your death. Like many people, you may consider using a trust agreement as a method for gifting your assets to loved ones after your death. If so, you may wonder “ What are the advantages for me of keeping assets in a trust? ” Only an experienced Illinois estate planning attorney can evaluate your estate and provide you with specific advice regarding the use of a trust agreement in your estate plan; however, there are some common advantages to using a trust that prompt many people to create one (or more) including, but not limited to, the following:
Probate avoidance – probate is the legal process required following the death of an individual. Even a relatively small estate can take months to probate, leaving assets out of reach of the intended beneficiaries. Assets held in a trust, however, will bypass the probate process altogether.
Continued control – once an asset is gifted in a Will you lose all control over the manner in which the assets is used by the beneficiary. A trust, however, allows you to decide, through the use of the trust terms, how assets can be used.
Taxes – by using the right kind of trust you may decrease your estate’s exposure to gift and estate taxes.
Asset protection – whether you want to protect assets from a spendthrift beneficiary or from creditors of yours, the right type of trust can provide asset protection both now and in the future.
As you can see, a trust can provide a wide variety of benefits to you and to your estate plan. The best way to determine what advantages a trust may offer to your specific estate plan is to consult with an experienced Illinois estate planning attorney. Contact the experienced Illinois estate planning attorneys at Nash Bean Ford & Brown, LLP by calling 309-944-2188 to schedule your appointment today.
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