Affiliated attorneys obtain and customize Revocable Living Trust documents from the company established by Henry Abts, author of The Living Trust, a book that trust attorneys nationwide call “the bible of The Living Trust”. Unless you happen to be a lawyer you have no way to evaluate the quality of complex legal documents. For over 40 years this company has finalized more than 70,000 trusts for satisfied clients. The documents (described above) have been developed through hands-on improvement by hundreds of attorneys who are an honor to the legal profession. We are proud to work with them.
This Trust is drafted to ensure accuracy with current state and federal laws.
It is updated as changes occur.
With a Revocable Living Trust your heirs avoid the probate court legal fees that are preferred by many lawyers Your assets that would otherwise have to go through probate get moved into your trust by simply changing their titles from your personal name(s) to the name of your new trust. You, or both of you, are made trustee (or co-trustees) and as long as one or both of you are alive and competent you control your financial affairs much the same way as you do presently, before getting the living trust. You manage your assets, receive the income, pay the bills, etc.
If both you and your co-trustee can no longer continue to manage your affairs (medically determined to have become incompetent or after dying), the successor trustee (someone you named in your trust, not lawyers or a court) automatically takes over for you. After your death(s) your estate can be settled, according to your directions as stated by you in the trust document, without going through an entire probate process and paying probate fees to lawyers. Your named successor trustee may get some legal advice, if needed, in settling the trust without publicity, hassles, delays, and the attorney fees for what is often called The Agony of Probate.
Shortly after arriving in Sarasota, Florida in 1986, I decided that the time had come to do some basic personal estate planning. Not knowing as much as I do today, I met a local attorney who agreed to provide me with a Revocable Living Trust, for which I paid $2200. I ran a copy which I gave to my son together with advice to use it, with the help of an attorney, should I happen to die. Without going into detail, in plain terms, the document wasn’t worth the paper it was written on. Surprise! Replace Probate!
I would not have been around to complain, “But I thought that you said…..”
You won’t be around either. As a client, even if you insist on a RLT, you have no way of determining the quality of the documents prepared for you. READ FURTHER FOR A SOLUTION.
A word of caution
Estate planning documents, if not prepared properly, can wind up in probate as my own family would have experienced. Years ago I met with an estate planning lawyer in Sarasota, Florida who prepared a Revocable Living Trust for me. After paying the $2,200 fee I gave a copy to my son, instructing him to use it should I die. A few years later, after studying The Living Trust by Henry Abts, I discovered that my documents were not worth the paper they were written on. Had I died, I would not have been able to complain to the lawyer who got my $2,200 and who stood to capture a significant portion of my own son’s modest inheritance.
Send the URL of this website to your parents.
I telephoned Henry Abts. After discussing with him my own background, I mentioned that thousands of retired persons on Florida’s west coast had probably never been given full information regarding living trusts and probate. Henry explained that his company was being contacted by persons throughout America who, after reading his book, desired a Revocable Living Trust. He put me in touch with a licensed estate-planning attorney in Sarasota who, after reading The Living Trust, obtained legal documents from Henry’s company for clients of his own law firm who wished to avoid probate court.
In doing your own research, I suggest that, rather than only going online, you read a small (70 page) book, Estate Planning Basics, by Jeffrey G. Marsocci, Esq., known as The Plain English Attorney(TM). We provide copies of this book that is also available from Amazon. Jeff is an affiliated network attorney, licensed in North Carolina. Click on Henry Abts’ name HERE and read the admiring words, In Memoriam, written by Attorney Marsocci. If you are doing online research, I recommend that you find Jeff’s professional website. Bookmark this page that you are presently on in order to return here following your other online research.
A word of caution with regard to “do-it-yourself” trust websites: One size does not fit all. No two people or families are alike. Your family’s needs, dynamics, personalities, and values are unique. If you use a form kit, you are asking for problems. Even LegalZoom.com reveals that 80% of people who fill in blank forms to create legal documents do so incorrectly. If the Trust is not executed and funded properly, it becomes invalid.
Roughly half of the trusts belonging to persons who move into North Carolina, when reviewed, are improperly funded or contain other legal deficiencies according to Attorney Jeffrey Marsocci. Uncorrected, they are potentially subject to attorney fees for both probate, probate cost as well as for trust administration. The only estate plan to rely on should be one that is prepared by an honorable estate-planning trust attorney.