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Is a trust essential in a Michigan estate plan?

Getting one's affairs in order is typically seen as a step taken by older adults. However, no matter what one's age, it is never too soon to start the estate planning process. Many people in Michigan wonder whether or not a trust is the best document to meet their estate planning needs.

Are trusts essential in an estate plan? The answer to this question depends on the person's specific situation. There are various types of trusts with different pros and cons. Before a person decides to create a trust, he or she should understand what it is. It is a document that is both a legal entity and a fiduciary agreement. In other words, as a trustor, you are able to specify how you want certain assets managed during your life and after your death. A third party, known as a trustee, is in charge of the trust.

A trust can be used to protect assets. It can also benefit a trustor by helping their loved ones avoid the probate process. It can help reduce estate taxes and it can be used to distribute property and assets more quickly and efficiently.

While there are many benefits to a trust, it is essential to understand if it is right for you. This generally requires a careful review of one's financial and family situation. No matter the reason for creating a trust, it is important that the correct trust is drafted and the goals of the trustor are met along the way.

Source: Sixtyandme.com, "Do I Need a Trust? One of the Most Important Estate Planning Questions," Rita Call, Feb. 15, 2017

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