Living Will vs Living Trust: What’s the Difference?


The topic of living wills and trusts is something not many people want to talk about. It’s like planning your death, and not everyone loves the idea of leaving the luxurious of the earth.

But that aside, have you stopped to think of what will happen to your loved ones and assets once you’re no more? That’s why we must talk about a living will and living trust. This article explains living will vs living trust to help you plan your life better.

What is a Living Will?

A living will is also known as the last will. It’s the power you have to decide what will happen to your assets and estate after your death. It’s the last wish document that directs the people left behind on the distribution of your assets.

The document also contains a legal appointee who’ll take care of your minor children. Before your death, your will is subject to amendments and improvements over time.  The will can also include instructions on how you want your funeral held and any advanced medical directives.

What is a Living Trust?

A living trust is where the management of all your assets goes to a trustee after your death. You can either choose the trustee or allow the management to go to an individual. You accord the trustee a fiduciary duty to take care of your assets.

The trust maker can also name multiple beneficiaries in the process. In other words, there can be other people that you give assess to your assets. The trustee will manage and spend on the assets for the benefit of the beneficiaries.

Trusts don’t just take effect after death. In case you get critically ill or incapacitated in any way, the trustee takes over the management of the property. With a trustee, you don’t have to go through publicity, expenses, and all the inconveniences that go into court processes.

Living Will vs Living Trust: The Difference

Of course, the two have similarities as far as your death, and the fate of your assets is concerned. They both involve legal procedures that will safeguard your assets’ distributions and management. If you’re having trouble differentiating or choosing between the two, Solari and Stock lawyers can be of help.

With a living trust, you place some of your assets in the hands of a trustee to take care of them then transfer them to your beneficiaries at a specific time. A living trust allows you to witness how the trustee manages your assets while you’re still alive. A living trust doesn’t have to go through a probate process.

A will dictates how you’ll want the distribution of your assets among your kin to happen after your death. You won’t be able to witness the process because it happens after your death. A will can go through the probate process because it can be contested.

Should You Choose a Will or a Trust?

If you have trouble understanding living will vs living trust, a lawyer can help you out. Either way, they’re both crucial legal processes that protect your assets. You shouldn’t take them for granted.

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