Estate Planning Academy Episode 13: I have a Revocable Living Trust, Now What?
Serving Clients in Bella Vista, Bentonville, Rogers, Springdale, Fayetteville and all of Northwest Arkansas
This article by Attorney Gary DeWitt, practicing in estate planning, probate, guardianship, and elder law.
The Biggest Mistake
The biggest mistake I see with a revocable living trust is creating it, doing some funding, but not finishing the job…
Just because you have a Trust, doesn’t mean it is a setup and forget thing
A Trust is a “living” document. In addition to the initial setup, a Trust needs to be maintained and reviewed from time to time.
Your Trust Must be Funded
- An empty Trust doesn’t do you any good
- An empty Trust is called a “dry Trust.” A Trust is required to have some property in it.
- If you let the Trust run out of property, it becomes invalid!
- Property not in your Trust is subject to Probate
What to put into your Revocable Living Trust
- Your Home and other real estate. At DeWitt Law, we always create a deed to move your home into trust
- Your Savings Accounts
- Your CDs
- Your Checking Accounts
- Your bank can help make the changes of ownership
- Non-Retirement investment accounts
- All personal property which is anything but real estate
- But not cars and boats
- At DeWitt Law, we move all your personal property to your Trust
When to name your trust as beneficiary
- I always recommend that your Trust be at least the final beneficiary on your
- Life Insurance
- Retirement Accounts (IRAs and 401(k)’s)
- Any other accounts that need special handling and are subject to IRS rules
- If you do this, then as a couple you make sure the money flows into the trust and is distributed, especially for minors, as you want