A will is a written document in which an adult person (the testator) makes a disposition of his or her property that only takes effect after his or her death and is subject to probate court proceedings.
Overall, wills are simpler and shorter instruments than a standard revocable living trust. Because wills are simpler and shorter documents, they are generally less time-consuming to create and less expensive. If a person has a relatively small estate, then a will might be the better choice than a standard revocable living trust.
How Do I Create A Will?
A witnessed will or a formal will, must be in writing and signed by an adult testator (or in the testator’s name by another person in the testator’s presence and direction). Generally, the will must be witnessed by at least two competent and disinterested witnesses.
A holographic will is document whereby the material provisions are in the handwriting of the testator, and signed by the testator. A holographic will does not have to be witnessed.
Revocable Living Trust
A trust is defined as a relationship whereby property is held by one party (the trustee) for the benefit of another (the beneficiary). The person who creates the trust is called the settlor, grantor or trustor. The settlor, grantor or trustor often serves as the initial trustee of the trust.
How Do I Create A Trust?
A trust can be created by agreement, declaration or exercise of a power of appointment to another person as a trustee. If a person is under a court-ordered conservatorship, then the conservator can create and fund a revocable trust to avoid the expense and delay of probate.
There are five legal elements to create a trust: (1) a settlor, trustor or grantor; (2) the settlor, trustor or grantor’s intent to create a trust; (3) trust property; (4) a trust beneficiary; and (5) a valid trust purpose.
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