Should You Create a Revocable Living Trust With Online Tools?

Mar 25, 2013

The Internet is full of marketers looking to turn a profit, and there is certainly nothing wrong with trying to improve your bottom line. However, as consumers we must be vigilant so that this bottom line is not padded at our expense

You can purchase the ability to use web-based tools that enable you to create your own estate planning documents including revocable living trusts. Should you create your own living trust using one of these downloads or worksheets?

We can get into that subject, and we certainly will in another blog post. But for now let’s go in another direction.

How do you even know that a revocable living trust is really the right legal device for you?

Some people are in professions that are especially vulnerable to legal actions. These individuals need asset protection.

There are families that include a member with special needs. These families may want to place assets into a trust for the benefit of this individual.

Estate tax exposure is something that high net worth people must contend with, and these individuals are going to be looking to implement estate tax efficiency strategies.

Because a revocable living trust is in fact revocable the grantor of the trust retains incidents of ownership. He or she can simply dissolve the trust and go forward with the funds, and the grantor may also act as trustee and beneficiary while the trust is in place.

As a result, these trusts do not provide asset protection; they do nothing to provide tax efficiency; and they are not the right choice for a beneficiary with special-needs.

It is not wise to make assumptions regarding estate planning vehicles. Discuss everything with a licensed estate planning attorney to be certain that you are proceeding in the optimal manner for your own well-being and that of your loved ones.


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