Frequently Asked Questions
What is estate planning?
Estate planning is simply the process of arranging your affairs so that your chosen individuals are appointed to take care of you, your dependents, your assets, and your finances should you be unable to do so yourself (e.g., dementia, coma, etc.).
Why do I need a living trust?
A living trust is a document which appoints your chosen individuals to manage your assets should you become incapacitated (e.g., dementia, coma, etc.), and distribute them to your desired beneficiaries on death.
What is probate?
Probate is the court-supervised process of administering your estate upon your death. Unfortunately, probate is infamous for all of the expenses and delays associated with it. A simple probate can take up to three years to complete and cost your family up to 5% of the total value of the estate.
Is a simple will enough?
Unfortunately, a simple will is subject to the expenses and delays of probate. For this reason, many individuals and families choose to create a living trust, which is designed for simplicity and to avoid the probate process completely.
What is a power of attorney?
Whereas a trust focuses on the management of your assets should you be unable to do so, a power of attorney allows you to appoint individuals to manage all other personal affairs such as taxes, social security, pensions, etc. However, medical decisions are handled by a separate document referred to as an, "advance health care directive."
What is an advance health care directive?
An advance health care directive allows you to appoint individuals to manage your medical decisions should you be unable to do so. An advance health care directive also allows you to make certain medical decisions on your own ahead of time. An advance health care directive is one part of an overall comprehensive estate plan.
Can I update my estate planning documents?
Absolutely! A living trust can be amended or comletely restate so long as the creator are alive and mentally capable of doing so. Any guardians for minor children you appoint in your will can also be changed through an amendment (called a, "codicil").
What is your general process?
What can I expect for our initial consultation?
A refreshingly casual and informative experience. We want to answer any questions you have to make sure that the world of estate planning and living trusts is crystal clear in your mind. We then go over our process, fees, and the overall client experience. Last, we outline next steps for you whether that be moving forward or takind some additional time to think about it.
What are the initial steps to get started?
What kind of information do you need from me?
Who you would like to manage your assets for you should you be unable to do so, and administer your estate upon your death.
How you would like your assets distributed after your death (and to whom).
Who you would like to make personal and medical decisions on your behalf should you be unable to do so (including guardianship of your children).
How can I learn more about Trust Legal Group?
Trust Legal Group is a boutique law firm with a specific focus on trusts and estate planning. Our mission is to help individuals, families, and business owners protect themselves, their loved ones, and their assets through a comprehensive approach to estate planning.