Once property is transferred into a revocable living trust it does not go through probate. After your death, the successor trustee, i.e., the person you appointed to become the trustee after your death, transfers ownership to the beneficiaries you named in the trust. This process can be as quick as a few weeks. There is no need for the successor trustee to retain lawyers nor are there any court fees to pay. After all the property in the revocable living trust is transferred to the beneficiaries, the revocable living trust ceases to exist.
Revocable living trusts are not much more complicated than a last will and testament, you simply have a few more choices to make. NUPP Legal provides you with completed examples and instructions with your forms. But there is a difference with respect to cost and requirements of living trusts vs wills:
1. In a revocable living trust you must choose a successor trustee (this is the person that will administer the living trust and make sure that trust property is transferred to each beneficiary after your death), similar to an executor of a last will and testament.
2. A revocable living trust will cost more if prepared by an attorney, however, with our living trust forms you can avoid that expense. The average cost of preparation by an attorney is over $1500.
3. No court supervision of a revocable living trust. Any additional expense now will be saved later since the living trust will not be part of the probate process, i.e., no legal fees or court costs.
4. If you own property in different states, a last will and testament will involve probate in each state, obviously an expensive and time consuming endeavor which should be avoided if possible. With a revocable living trust, all property properly placed into the living trust can be distributed immediately by the successor trustee regardless of location.
Though we provide extensive material and examples to help you complete your revocable living trust, if you have questions that remain unanswered or have a complicated business structure, you may want to contact a lawyer, however, your expense should be minimized if you already have a Declaration of Trust (the revocable living trust document) already prepared.