While the goal of wills and trusts are similar, to ensure you retain control of how you would like to distribute your assets, the implementation of each legal action is quite different.
A will distributes assets to the intended beneficiaries after you pass on. The named executor of the will is the person responsible for ensuring the distribution of your assets. A will only takes effect when you pass away and should always reflect your current situation. For example, many people update their will after a divorce, marriage, and/or birth of a child. Most people elect for a trust over a will, since they believe a trust avoids the probate process. However, in Texas the probate courts permit an independent administration, which saves time and money with minimized court supervision. Additionally, a will is often less expensive up front.
A trust is a legal entity that is set up to control your assets. You can establish this action while you’re alive and generally goes into effect immediately. A trust requires more maintenance than a will because all your assets including property, cars, and accounts must properly transfer to the beneficiaries. Therefore, with the additional maintenance, trusts tend to be more expensive. This type of legal action is beneficial in the sense that you can still control your assets. For example, you can decide pre-determined distributions on specified dates to your intended beneficiaries.
Helping Create the Right Estate Plan for You
Every person will have a different reason to choose a will over a trust or vice versa. The best way to help you decide which is right for you is to gather all relevant financial documents and schedule an appointment with an estate planning attorney.
To schedule your appointment, call our firm today at (832) 781-0320 or contact us online.