Home » Blog » Should You Rethink Your Trust?
Should You Rethink Your Trust?

Should You Rethink Your Trust?

Troy Werner and his family

Written by Troy Werner

Troy Werner has been an indispensable asset to The Werner Law Firm since joining in 2009, providing exceptional legal service to its clients.

Get To Know Troy!
POSTED ON: October 30, 2023

While this is an admirable goal, a trust may not be the only way to avoid probate.

A trust is a pretty standard term within estate planning, a "relationship in which the holder of property (or any other transferable right) gives it to another person or entity who must keep and use it solely for the benefit of another person or group of persons who are termed as 'beneficiary'". However, how aware are we of all the variants that encompass a trust? And, when should we stop to rethink whether a trust is adequate for our specific needs? Kiplinger’s recent article, “Four Reasons You Don’t Need a (Revocable) Trust,” sets out some reasons to rethink a trust.

  1. Probate avoidance. You can typically attach beneficiaries to the majority of your assets. You can add a transfer-on-death (TOD) to your investment accounts. You can attach them to any taxable account, and the assets will “transfer” according to your wishes outside the court system. A similar concept exists for bank accounts in the form of payable-on-death (POD) designations. Retirement accounts, life insurance and annuity contracts all have beneficiaries attached.
  2. Simple wishes. If you want to get your assets to your beneficiaries in a direct manner, a trust is likely unnecessary. However, you will need a trust if you want control over how the assets are distributed beyond your death.
  3. Medicaid eligibility. This is where it’s important to differentiate revocable, or living trusts, from irrevocable trusts. The former is primarily used for control and efficiency while distributing your assets. The latter is typically used to reduce your taxable estate. Other tools can help to minimize taxes. However, a stand-alone revocable trust will do nothing to reduce your taxes, since it is tied to your Social Security number.
  4. Bad follow-through. Many people go through the hassle and cost of putting together a trust but never follow through and transfer their assets into the trust. That’s the only way it will work. If you plan to use a trust as part of your estate plan, you must transfer ownership of the assets into the trust for it to have any effect. For example, there must be a deed transfer for your home and a title change for your investment accounts. Creating the trust is an expensive waste of time without funding the trust.

If you need help understanding whether a trust is right for your estate planning needs, or if you are going through a probate case, we are always happy to help.  Our Los Angeles probate attorneys can guide you through California's probate process.

If you have any questions about trusts, schedule a free appointment with us through our online appointment page.

You can also read reviews from some of the hundreds of clients we have helped over the years.

Reference: Kiplinger (Sep. 16, 2023) “Four Reasons You Don’t Need a (Revocable) Trust”

Share This Post

Why Our Living Trust Law Firm & Probate Attorneys?

Founded in 1975 by L. Rob Werner and serving California for over 48 years, our dedicated attorneys are available for clients, friends, and family members to receive the legal help they need and deserve. You can trust in our experience and reputation to help navigate you through your unique legal matters.

Whether you need help creating a living trust or navigating probate, our living trust law firm's compassionate team of estate planning lawyers and probate lawyers are here to help you and ready to answer your questions.

Our goal is to make your case as easy as possible for you. Hiring a lawyer can be a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. From the moment you contact our firm, through the final resolution of your case, our goal is to make the process easy and understandable. We cannot change the fact that probate is a long and complicated process, but through our Werner Law Firm Difference, we strive to go out of our way to keep you informed of your case through every step of the way. We are constantly refining our processes and procedures for a more streamlined and calm client experience. Our goal is to have you feel like a burden was lifted from your shoulders, and that we made the whole process an easy one

If you're dealing with a legal matter, we urge you to schedule a free initial appointment today and join the many satisfied clients who have contacted Werner Law Firm.

Book an Initial Call Now

Join Our eNewsletter and our California Estate Planning and Probate Blog Digest

Werner Law Firm logo
The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. See full disclaimer here.
Santa Clarita, CA Office

27433 Tourney Rd, Suite 200
Santa Clarita, California 91355

Los Angeles, CA Office

445 S. Figueroa St., Suite 3100
Los Angeles, California 90071

Bakersfield, CA Office

4900 California Ave, Tower B-210
Bakersfield, California 93309

Newport Beach, CA Office

23 Corporate Plaza Dr., Suite 150
Newport Beach, California 92660

Lancaster, CA Office

626 W Lancaster Blvd.,
Lancaster, California 93534

Pasadena, CA Office

35 North Lake Avenue, Suite 710
Pasadena, California 91101

Simi Valley, CA Office

2655 First St, Suite 250
Simi Valley, CA Office, California 93065

Encino, CA Office

15760 Ventura Blvd, Suite 700
Encino, California 91436

Oxnard, CA Office

300 E Esplanade Dr., 9th Floor
Oxnard, California 93036

Santa Barbara, CA Office

7 W. Figueroa St., Suite 200
Santa Barbara, California 93101

IMS - Estate Planning and Elder Law Practice Growth Advisors
Powered by