Do I Need a Will or Trust?

Everyone needs a will, trust, or both to ensure your legacy is passed on in the way you intend. A well-drafted plan ensures that what you do have is not wasted on court fees, establishes your intentions for sentimental items and family heirlooms, and can even state your wishes for the care of pets.

For families with significant wealth, estate planning and trusts can ensure your money stays where you wanted it to go even if your spouse or children remarry, divorce, are sued, or are the victims of financial predators. Estate planning also ensures your assets are not wasted by frivolous spending. Commonly cited statistics state that 70% of family wealth is gone within two generations—and 90% after three generations. More than half of high-net-worth individuals have never discussed their wealth with their families. You do not have to be a statistic and can instead use estate planning to pass along your wealth and wisdom to future generations.

For everyone, estate planning can help ensure your values are passed on to the next generation and that your wishes are stated clearly. Informal discussions have no legal standing when it comes to the distribution of an estate. The only way to make sure your goals are carried out is to execute a will or establish a trust with a qualified estate planning attorney.

Posted in: Estate Planning