If you are one of many people across California who are working on your estate plan, you are probably devoting considerable time to deciding who you want to have your assets after your passing. Depending on your situation, you may also be taking steps to disinherit one or more of your children, or you may also be considering leaving your children unequal amounts for some reason or another. At the Law Offices of Alice A. Salvo, we understand how establishing a trust can help you down the line, should you decide to disinherit a child, and we have helped many California residents create theirs and work through other common estate planning issues.
Per Kiplinger, there are many benefits that come with creating a living trust, and this may prove particularly true if your estate is especially complicated, if you own property in multiple states, or if considerable stress or strife exists within your family. Just how can establishing a trust benefit you, if you are among those looking to disinherit a child?
For starters, placing assets into a trust can help you avoid probate, which is the court-supervised process of proving a will. Typically, the probate process gives your heirs a chance to come forward and dispute the contents of your will, should they choose to do so. Therefore, unless you establish a trust, your disinherited child may be able to challenge your wishes in an attempt to gain access to your estate.
When your estate goes through probate, it also becomes public record, meaning your children (and anyone else who wishes to do so) can see how you chose to distribute your assets. This can cause unnecessary family drama if you decide to leave your children unequal amounts for whatever reason, but by creating a trust, you can bypass probate and keep this information under wraps. More about estate planning is available on our web page.