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Setting Up a Living Trust in Boise

After decades of assisting families and individuals complete their own customized estate planning documents, we have come to learn the many different ways that a living trust could help. Our premier and talented team of Boise estate planning attorneys often use living trusts for families and individuals to help our clients protect their assets while they are alive. The use of a living trust can also assist our clients in making meaningful decisions about how to distribute their money, property and assets to their family and loved ones in the wisest ways possible for several generations after they pass away.

Our premier Boise estate planning team includes attorneys, paralegals, and legal assistants who all have years of experience helping individuals and families plan for and meet their own unique estate planning needs. Our Boise team consists of partners Randy Budge and Lane Erickson and attorneys Nate Palmer and Dave Bagley. We are proud of the fact that the lawyers on our team are widely recognized as experts in estate planning. Client ratings and reviews evidence that our lawyers are skilled, experienced and knowledgeable.

If you are in Boise and are considering completing your own written estate plan we strongly suggest you consider how using a living trust could help you. Here are four specific things you should know about living trusts.

Living Trusts are not Expensive

The number one thing to understand about living trusts is that they don't have to be expensive. To be fair, a well-drafted living trust will cost you more than if all you do is get a simple last will and testament. However, there are specific savings that a living trust could give you and your family which in the long term could make up for this difference.

When a living trust is done correctly all the assets that are transferred into the living trust are no longer subject to the requirement of probate after you pass away. In other words, if you set up the living trust properly and fund it properly so that most of your assets are owned by the living trust you might be able to avoid probate and the time and expenses associated with probate. However, using a living trust is only a benefit if it is done correctly. What we often find is that a client will have a living trust set up by a lawyer, but the lawyer doesn't help FUND the trust by putting any of the clients assets and property into the trust. When this happens, the trust is like a pie with nothing but the crust. The real key to using a living trust is having an expert help you in both creating and funding your living trust. This is where our team of Boise estate planning lawyers can help you. We've helped numerous clients properly use a living trust as part of their estate plan and we can help you too.

Trusts are not Just for Rich People

Another important thing you need to know is that it isn't just rich people that use trusts. It seems that everyone has an wealthy uncle, or a rich friend or an acquaintance that is using or has used a trust. Because of this, most people believe that they aren't "wealthy" enough to need a trust. To be clear, while it is true that many wealthy people actually do use trusts as part of their estate planning, a trust is not just for rich people. Really, you don't need to be rich to enjoy the benefits of using a living trust as part of your estate plan. To help you know if a trust would help you, here is a short list of the benefits of using a trust:

  1. Using a trust helps avoid the expense of probate after you die;
  2. Using a trust eliminates the need for any type of conservatorship over your property while you are alive;
  3. Using a trust avoids the time associated with a probate because distributions can be made immediately;
  4. Using a trust avoids any court involvement in distributions of your property after you die;
  5. Using a trust may help you protect either yourself or your loved ones if any of you suffer from a disability or handicap; and
  6. Using a trust allows you to make distributions to multiple generals of people over the course of many years if you choose.

There are many benefits to using a living trust. While using a living trust can and does help many people only you can decide if one is right for you. We would be happy to discuss with you how a living trust could help you.

Living Trusts do not Need to be Complex

An additional misunderstanding about trusts is that most people believe that using a living trust involves lots of work. Many or our clients have stated that they believe that the effort and time it takes to set up and fund a living trust is just too much work. The reality is that creating a living trust and funding the trust by transferring assets into it takes little more work or time that just creating a basic estate plan. Most basic estate plans include at least 4 written documents which are: a last will and testament, a durable power of attorney for property; a living will and a power of attorney for health care.

There are steps that must be done to transfer property into the trust once it is created, but these can be done fairly easily. We have guided numerous clients through the process and have assisted in making sure all of the steps are done, so we have a complete pie and not just a pie crust when we are done. We are confident that through our expert guidance the creating and funding of a living trust for you would be pretty simple.

You Still Have Control of Your Assets Through a Living Trust

The last and perhaps biggest misconception most people have about how trusts work is that most people believe that once a trust is created they will lose control over any of their own assets that are placed in the trust. With a living trust this is not true. With a living trust, the individual who created the trust is called the trustor or grantor normally maintains control and operates the trust as the trustee during their lifetime. The individual who receives the benefit of the property, money, or assets that are in a trust is called the beneficiary.

The good news is that an individual can be the creator of the trust, the trustee and the beneficiary all at the same time. Essentially, this means you would be able to retain complete control over all of your assets that you place into the trust, as well as receive all of the benefits from those assets. Additionally, you can also be very specific about how and when distributions of all your money, property and assets in the trust are made. So by having a living trust, you actually have more control over the assets than you would if you only have a last will and testament.

Enlist an Boise Estate Planning and Probate Attorney to Help You

Our experienced Estate Planning team of attorneys can help you and your family with your Boise estate plan or with a probate needs including creating a living trust if needed. Whether you are seeking your own customized Estate Plan or are in need of a Probate for a loved one who has passed, we are available to discuss your options and answer your questions at an initial consultation. Call us toll free at 877.232.6101 or 208.232.6101 for a consultation with the Racine Olson team. You can also email us directly at We will answer your questions and will help you solve your Estate Planning and Probate problems.

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