Pinnacle Legacy Law Blog

Understanding the Basics: What is a Living Trust and Why You Should Consider One

What is a Living Trust?

Understanding the Basics

A living trust is a legal entity created to hold your assets while alive. It provides a way to transfer your assets to beneficiaries upon your passing without the need to go through the probate process.

Avoiding the Probate Process

Probate is a court-supervised process that settles an individual’s estate after death. It can be time-consuming and costly, but living trusts help avoid it.

Why Should You Consider a Living Trust?

Efficiency and Expediency

Living trusts are known for their efficiency. Upon your death, the assets held in the trust are distributed to your beneficiaries quickly, without the need for probate court involvement.

Preserving Privacy

Unlike a will, a living trust is not a public document. This means your estate distribution remains private.

Protecting Your Assets

Assets held in a living trust can be protected from creditors, lawsuits, and divorce proceedings.

How Does a Living Trust Work?

Incorporating Will-like Instructions

The living trust contains all the instructions typically found in a will, specifying how your assets should be distributed after your death.

Properly Funding Your Trust

For the trust to be effective, your assets must be appropriately funded. This includes transferring the titles of your assets into the trust.

Bypassing Court-supervised Probate

By holding your assets in the trust, you bypass the court-supervised probate process altogether.

The Benefits of a Living Trust

Avoiding Estate Taxes

A living trust can help reduce or avoid estate taxes in certain circumstances.

Seamless Asset Distribution

Living trusts allow for the seamless distribution of assets to your beneficiaries.

Flexibility and Control

A living trust gives you control over your assets during your lifetime and the flexibility to change the trust as your circumstances or wishes change.

Is a Living Trust Right for You?

Assessing Your Estate

When deciding if a living trust is right for you, consider the size of your estate, the complexity of your financial situation, and your wishes for asset distribution after your death.

Consulting with an Expert

It’s always a good idea to consult an estate planning expert when making important decisions about your future.

Taking Control of Your Future

A living trust gives you control over your assets and your future. It’s an essential tool in estate planning.


Living trusts offer several benefits over traditional wills, including efficiency, privacy, and asset control. They are a crucial tool in estate planning and are worth considering.

It’s Planning Season

For each season, there is planning that you must do on the farm. To be successful, this planning must be done thoughtfully and in advance. Your life is no different. To properly plan for the next season in your life and the lives of your family, a well-executed estate plan is a must. Below are a few documents to consider when crafting a plan to protect yourself, your family, your business, and your legacy.

The Ultimate Guide to Power of Attorney: Understanding Its Importance and Functionality

What is Power of Attorney? A power of attorney is a legal document that gives one person, known as the agent, the authority to act on behalf of another person, referred to as the principal. This authority can cover many actions, including managing finances, making...

10 Reasons to Start Estate Planning Now

Although it may not be ideal to think about the future of your possessions after your departure, creating an estate plan ensures you and your assets are protected during and after your life. For those who haven’t started planning their estate, here are ten pressing reasons to use estate planning services sooner rather than later.

What You Lose By Not Planning

The motivation to put a legal plan in place increases when you fully understand what you lost when you do not plan.

Why Hiring an Attorney Can Streamline the Probate Process and Prevent Family Conflicts

As many of you know, probate is a complex and often challenging process. It can be both time-consuming and expensive, and a multitude of paperwork and legal requirements can make it feel overwhelming. "Should I avoid probate?" is a frequent question many individuals...

Do You Have Planning Phobia?

Most people dread the thought of sitting in a room with a lawyer discussing how their assets should be managed and distributed if they become incapacitated or die. Most of the planning tools utilized by PLL legal teams leave the client in total control – including the power to invest their assets and, in most cases, the power to spend the assets as they choose while they are living. Your assets are just that. YOURS.

Three Principles for Financial Independence

You can risk your time. You can risk your interest. But never, under any circumstance, risk your principal. If you have a principal, you can recover. If you don’t, you have to start from scratch.

The Role of a Lawyer in Drafting a Will: Ensuring Proper Execution and Legal Compliance

Why You Need a Lawyer When contemplating the question, "What should be in my will?" it's essential to understand the lawyers' role in this process. Their expertise ensures proper execution and legal compliance of your will, making their involvement vital in drafting....

Understanding the Benefits of a Revocable Living Trust: Avoiding Probate Made Simple

Can probate be avoided? The answer is yes, and one of the best ways to do so is by creating a revocable living trust. By transferring your assets into this trust, you effectively remove ownership from yourself and place it within it. In essence, the trust becomes a...

Estate Planning 101: Everything You Need to Know

You’ll need an estate plan to protect your assets and loved ones when you can no longer do it. Estate planning helps you designate individuals entitled to your assets in the event of your incapacitation or death. An attorney can guide you to ensure beneficiaries and heirs receive assets with minimal gift taxes, estate taxes, and other tax impacts.

Start protecting your legacy.

Click the link below and schedule a call with a member of our team.  We will explain our unique process for working with farmers, ranchers and their families. The call is FREE!