McCunn Law: Your Rocklin Trust Lawyers
At McCunn Law, we take pride in offering trust, wills, and estate planning services that help to prepare families for the eventual loss of a loved one. For almost 20 years, we have been providing the citizens of Rocklin with reliable, honest estate planning services. We know the impact a well-made trust can have on both beneficiary and trustee and how it can bring peace of mind and comfort during a difficult situation.
We have significant expertise creating trusts, and we know that some of our competitors do, as well. However, we provide a personalized approach to trusts that other firms can’t match. When you work with our Rocklin trust lawyers, you can be sure that your trust works for you and your family and is not a boilerplate document consisting of generic terms. We create tailored estate planning documents that provide holistic solutions for your unique family situation.
What Is a Trust?
Many people use the terms trust and will interchangeably. Though these estate planning documents are similar in some ways, they are vastly different in others. It is important to understand the difference, so you can make informed and empowered decisions about the future of your assets. When used correctly, both wills and trusts can be immensely helpful in your estate planning journey.
A will is a document that outlines your wishes after your death and is not active until your death occurs. In addition, wills must go through the probate process to distribute your assets. A trust is an account or collection of assets held by a trustee for distribution to your beneficiaries after your death. Generally speaking, your assets are owned by the trust itself and distributed by the trustee. Trusts become active the moment they are created and can often be adjusted or eliminated until your death renders them irrevocable. Additionally, in some cases, trusts may enable your family to avoid estate and inheritance taxes, ensuring that the state does not seize an unfair amount of your hard-earned assets.
Types of Trusts
There are two general types of trusts available for California estate planning purposes. The first and most common is a living trust. With a living trust, the trustor places the desired assets in a trust and retains access to and control over those assets. The assets in the trust can be used to support the trustor while they are still living and are subject to alterations, additions, and other actions—including the addition of more beneficiaries. Living trusts are also called revocable trusts, as the trustor can take their assets back and close the trust if they so choose.
The other main type of trust is called an irrevocable trust. This kind of trust cannot be changed or altered in any way after it is created. The trustor cannot take their funds back or make any alterations to their beneficiaries and distribution plan. This type of trust can help you avoid certain estate taxes. Creating an irrevocable trust can also help you become eligible for programs like Medicaid—since your assets are no longer in your name, you may be below the income threshold for these government programs. Finally, putting money in an irrevocable trust may help your beneficiaries avoid creditors who appear after your death to collect debts. Again, because the money is not in the trustor’s name, creditors cannot take a portion of it to compensate for the trustor’s debts.