Estate planning can be complicated and overwhelming. However, a simple internet search can make the process much easier. Educating yourself about the process and the various documents involved can help you make the best possible estate planning decisions. Our firm is here to help educate you about your options. Read on to learn more about the difference between a will and a trust.
What is a will?
A will is one of the most important estate planning documents you can make. A will allows you to state how your assets should be divided amongst your loved ones. Failing to create a will means your assets will be divided by the state of California, rather than according to your wishes.
What makes a will valid?
In order to create a valid will, it is important to work with an experienced estate planning attorney. Because a will is such an important legal document, it must meet the following criteria to be considered valid:
- The testator must be at least 18 years old and of “sound mind and memory”
- The testator must either sign the will themselves or another person must sign the testator’s name at their direction and in their presence
- At least two people must witness the signature and sign their names on the will within 30 days of each other
- At some point during the will’s execution and attestation, the testator must tell each witness that the document is their will
What is a trust?
A trust is a way to put aside certain assets for your loved ones. A trust involves a trustor, trustee, and beneficiary. The trustor is the creator of the trust, the trustee is in charge of the trust until the beneficiary receives the assets at a certain point.
What types of trusts are available in California?
The two main types of trusts in California include:
- Revocable Trust: This is one of the most common choices because it can be modified, changed, or terminated at any time without the approval of the beneficiary.
- Irrevocable Trust: This needs a trustor to revoke their rights when it is created, indicating they have no more rights to the trust and cannot change or terminate it.
If you have any questions or concerns about the difference between wills and trusts, our firm is here to help.
Contact our Firm
Working with an experienced estate planning attorney, such as Jaci Feldman of the Woodland Hills, California, Law Offices of Yacoba Ann Feldman, will ensure that you are taken care of when you need it most. Do not delay. Estate planning is a more urgent matter than you may think. You never know what the future holds. Contact The Law Offices of Yacoba Ann Feldman to schedule a consultation today.