Developing an estate plan now that includes an estate planning trust can help to reduce or avoid potential conflict between your loved ones in the future.

And, utilizing an estate planning trust can help protect and transfer your assets to beneficiaries. From quickly covering funeral expenses to easily passing along remaining money to the people and causes you care most about, an estate planning trust can truly help your family when they need it most.

Below is a summary of the 5 Ways an Estate Planning Trust Protects Your Wealth and Your Loved Ones.

1. Use the money you already have
You do not need an alternate way to earn money specifically for building your estate trust. Consider your current finances. Do you have a rainy day fund, CD, money market account or an annuity? You can use the money you already have to fund an insurance policy, which is placed in a trust, helping to safeguard your financial legacy and ensuring your final expenses are taken care of.

While wills are great to have, if you only have a will, it may take months or even years for beneficiaries to gain access to your money after you pass away. However, funds in an estate planning trust may be available to beneficiaries in only a few days.

2. Reserve assets for your favorite charities
Most estate planning trust options offer the possibility to designate funds to causes closest to your heart. Providing money to your favorite charity allows you to create a living legacy by helping the organization continue their meaningful work.

One of the best aspects about an estate planning trust is that you aren’t limited with the number of beneficiaries you can choose. That means you can list your loved ones as a beneficiary and also your favorite charities.

3. Ensure your funds are exempt from probate
The funds in an estate planning trust are exempt from probate, which means less wait time before your beneficiaries receive funds.

Arranging the when, where and how details of a funeral is difficult enough when emotionally overwhelmed. If your beneficiaries are left to plan your funeral without an estate planning trust, they’re likely to pay thousands of dollars out-of-pocket in order to cover the costs, while your savings, mutual funds and other assets are in probate.

It’s common for funeral homes to expect payment before services have begun. If your loved ones are not prepared, you may be unintentionally putting them thousands of dollars in debt. Assets experience probate delays lasting from months to years.

Incorporating an estate planning trust into your financial portfolio can help you easily eliminate the struggles of out-of-pocket funeral expenses for your beneficiaries.

4. Safely leave assets to a beneficiary with a disability
If your child, grandchild or other beneficiary has a disability there most likely is a Special Needs Trust in place. If you designate money for that individual in your will there could be issues.

First, there is probate, which can take months, if not years in some cases to settle. Second, any money you provide directly to an individual with special needs could very well disqualify them, at least for a period of time, for any government benefits they may currently be receiving.

Purchasing a whole life insurance policy on yourself, and placing that policy into an estate planning trust and naming the Special Needs Trust as a beneficiary, gives you peace of mind knowing the money you want to provide is not only protected during your lifetime, but will transfer quickly to the trust previously set up for the care of your loved one.

5. Protect your assets from creditors
Events happen in life that have financial consequences which could possibly jeopardize your best intentions of leaving money to loved ones or charities, if not both, after you’re gone.

Setting up an estate planning trust can ensure the money you intend to leave to beneficiaries, along with the funds designated for end of life needs, will be protected from creditors during your life should debt or a lawsuit become an issue. The Irrevocable assignment to the trust guarantees that the money cannot be seized by anyone and the proceeds can only be dispersed as you intend.

Abbey Caskets offers estate and funeral planning trusts that help to create a complete financial plan that best fits your needs. Contact us today at 800.987.7380 to learn about the various options available to you.

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