Law Offices of Frye & Vazquez, P.L.
Call Today. 305-508-5749 | 877-421-5473

A trust offers different advantages than a will

If asked whether they have an estate plan in place, many Florida citizens would answer yes, they have a will, or no, they don't. While a will is a basic foundational document in any estate plan, it is not the best choice for most people. Although not the only purpose, the primary function of estate planning is to create an orderly distribution of assets from a decedent to his or her beneficiaries. A properly executed will can suffice to do so, but a living trust provides advantages a will does not.

A primary difference between the two legal documents is when they become effective. Legal experts explain that a will has no legal effect until its creator, called the testator, dies. A living trust created for the purposes of transferring assets upon the death of the creator of the trust, called the settlor, becomes effective immediately upon proper execution. Importantly, this includes the funding of the trust.

Funding the trust means that the title to an asset has been transferred from the name of the settlor to the trust as owner. The settlor typically is also the initial trustee and retains total control over the asset while alive. Upon death, a successor trustee takes over and distributes the asset as indicated in the trust. The trust, as a legal entity, at all times owns the asset. Without a trust, a will can direct the asset to the beneficiary, but if the title is held solely in the name of the decedent, it will be necessary to open a probate to transfer title to the beneficiary.

An estate planning lawyer will advise that not only is probate a lengthy and costly process, it is also a public one. Probate may also be avoided by the use of pay on death beneficiary designations where available.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

What Our Clients Are Saying

  • I have known and worked with Austin Frye and his team since 2008. In that time he has helped serve both my business and personal legal planning needs. From guidance on reviewing and keeping shareholder and state documentation up to date... - Robert
  • It is difficult enough to cope with the emotional challenges of closing a parent's estate, and when you are also faced with the issue of your parents having insufficient documentation, and being remote from your siblings… - Zara L.
  • Austin Frye provided legal services to my father while alive and to his estate after his death; when showing the EP docs his firm prepared to other professionals (lawyers, financial advisors, accountants)… - Mark S
  • I've been a client of Austin Frye's for over 10 years. In that time, he's handled my estate/trust planning and asset protection as well as complicated business deals. - Leslie
  • Mr. Frye recently set up a complicated special needs trust for my son and, as usual, did a great job explaining it and in putting our minds at ease about our son's future well-being. - Dr. Howard
Read More...
  • NYSBA
  • Massachusetts Bar Association
  • The Florida Bar 1950
  • CFP
  • Florida Bar Elder Law Member
  • Academy Of Florida Elder Law Attorneys
  • Florida bar Business law Member
  • NAELA National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Inc.
Email Us For a Response

Contact Us For Personal Attention To Your Legal Matter

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Office Location

Get In Touch With Us
20900 W. Dixie Highway
Miami, FL 33180

Toll Free: 877-421-5473
Phone: 305-508-5749
Map & Directions