Wills and trusts are designed to provide for the distribution of estate assets at the time of one’s death. When deciding whether a will or trust best fits your needs depends on your particular circumstances. Revocable trusts are a popular alternative to wills in Michigan because of their ability to avoid probate administration. The importance of regularly reviewing your estate plan cannot be over-stated, especially as it pertains to trusts. An out-dated trust can be worse than having no trust at all because assets one holds may change, relationships with beneficiaries may change, etc.
Some individuals prefer to execute a will instead because they are much less complicated, easier to understand, and are not as expensive to have prepared. Furthermore, wills can successfully stream-line the probate process by providing a road map, or a guideline, as to how one desires to have their estate handled upon death. Thus, having a will can greatly minimize the court’s involvement in determining the handling of the estate of the deceased. On the other hand, a will, unlike a trust, may not adequately address your individualized needs. This is especially true if you are a business owner or if you have minor children. Additionally, if you own real property located in another state a trust may be beneficial in order to avoid ancillary probate in the other state. There are pros and cons to a will versus a trust. This is why it is essential to schedule a consultation with an attorney in order to assess which will best accomplish your objectives.