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Do I want a revocable or irrevocable trust?

Retirement age is about the time that most American’s get serious about organizing their estate plan. Although many people appreciate the value of an estate plan earlier in life, it’s one of those tasks that is easily put off for either personal or financial reasons. When the time arrives to get serious, the estate planning learning curve can be overwhelming to many. To clear up any confusion, here is an overview of one the most common questions asked during estate planning.

What is the difference between a revocable trust and an irrevocable trust?

A trust is an estate planning tool that gives a person the ability to state, very specifically, how they want their assets distributed during and after life. This is a tool used often to keep assets out of probate. Here is a very brief introduction to two types of trusts typically offered in estate planning.

Revocable/Living Trust: There are several names for the type of trust where the owner is capable of revoking, cancelling or altering the plan at any point in time. These changes can include adding or removing beneficiaries or making changes to asset distribution. This type of plan is called either a revocable trust, a revocable living trust or a living trust.

Irrevocable Trust: Alternately, the terms of an irrevocable living trust are set in stone. Revocable trusts become irrevocable when the grantor is no longer living. An irrevocable trust helpful in minimizing estate taxes and protecting assets.

Determining which type of trust is right for you is a very personal and complicated decision. It is advisable that those in need of either creating, or updating an estate plan, reach out to a professional right away for custom guidance.

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