There is a saying that the only two irrefutable things in life are death and taxes. That is definitely true but at least there is something you can do to protect your interests in the event of illness, incapacitation and even death. It is called a revocable living trust.
The definition of a revocable living trust is that it is a legal document created by a person of sound mind (this would be you) which is comprised of an agreement in which you designate someone to represent your interests in the event you cannot do so yourself.
Can be Revoked
A revocable living trust can be amended or even canceled by you at any time. In legalese, you would be the original trustee and as such dictate your treatment and business while you are of sound mind. In the case when you are not, your alternate trustee steps in to carry out your wishes.
This revocable living trust could dictate how your funds could be used for taking care of your affairs to divvying up items in the estate to even directing doctors when to “pull the plug.”
A revocable living trust is not just for death or dying times. It could even be set up for implementation should you become jailed or even temporarily incapacitated due to surgery. For the most part however, it is put in place to take care of your interests in the event you cannot do so yourself.
Remember, you are your own beneficiary during the times when all is well and you are of sound body and mind. However, it is a great way to grant management of your funds and other assets to another trustee in the event of your incapacitation. Once you are competent, the trust rolls back to your control.
The revocable trust does provide some protection of your assets against creditors during your incapacitation as well as your death. In some cases, many courts of law will review the revocable trust as a type of will document in lieu of an actual will if there is not one available.
The assets could be easily be passed on to the trustees of the trust should you die without having to go through a will probate.
Some people may use the revocable living trust as both a trust as well as a power of attorney. What would happen is this: the trust would be drawn up but you would only transfer a few assets or none at all to the trust at first.
A clause would be inserted into the trust that would grant the transfer of your assets to your appointed trustee should you become unable to handle your own affairs due to incapacity.
A durable power of attorney would have to be executed at the same time as the trust in order for the transfer of assets to be legal and binding.
Do not leave your future up to chance and speculation amongst your family and friends. Set the wheels in motion now to protect your interests with a revocable living trust. Change it as your circumstances change so that it will be up to date and in keeping with current family dynamics. This is one of the best moves to protect your future.
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