Most people don't want to think about their death, let alone plan their affairs for what happens after they're gone. I know this post is going to make some heads spin because there will be a lot of information here, but just based on my own personal experience with these situations it is very important information that most people don't know. Family, friends, loved ones can go through a great amount of stress and red tape trying to figure out what your last wishes would have been. Unfortunately I have been in the middle of family members fighting over my grandmothers estate. It wasn't necessary or a respectful thing to go through at that time.. Luckily the internet is full of information and this what I have found and condensed to hopefully make it easier for you.(also sorry about the weird line spacing issues, that's what happens when you copy and paste from the web sometimes)
Do I Need a Will or a Living Trust?
Most people need a will, but not everyone needs a living trust. Whether or not you need a living trust depends on your age, how wealthy you are, and whether you’re married.
Even if you decide that you need a living trust, you should also make a will to name an executor, name guardians for minor children, and take care of any property that doesn't end up in your trust.
What If I Don’t Have a Will or Living Trust?
If you don’t make a will or a living trust, your property will be distributed according to the laws of your state.
The Differences between a Living Trust, a Last Will and a Living Will These legal documents are commonly confused because of their similar-sounding names. While all three are vital estate planning tools, each one serves a distinct purpose. Here are some of their key differences.
A Last Will is used to distribute property to beneficiaries, specify last wishes, and name guardians for minor children. It is an important part of any estate plan. Without one, the courts will make these critical decisions for you.
A Living Trust is used to transfer property to beneficiaries. But unlike a last will, a living trust is not usually subject to probate court, which can take years and cost thousands in attorneys' and court fees. A Living Will lets you outline important healthcare decisions in advance, such as whether or not to remain on artificial life support.