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The Importance of Funding a Revocable Trust to Avoid Probate

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    The Importance of Funding a Revocable Trust to Avoid Probate

    • St. Petersburg Estate Planning and Probate Attorney has over six decades of experience helping people secure their legacy. We have a proven track record of success for our clients. Our law firm has been around for a long time because we get great results and don’t take advantage of people. 
    • Our lawyers have achieved a 10.0 AVVO rating, the highest possible score, signifies our attorneys’ substantial experience and successful track record. This rating considers various factors, including years of practice, disciplinary history, professional achievements, and peer endorsements. Attorneys with a history of winning complex, high-stakes cases are more likely to achieve this rating, which serves as a benchmark of excellence and reliability in the legal profession.
    • 2024 Super Lawyers (allowed to publicly announce after June 24) – Many of our  lawyers have been selected to be on the Florida Super Lawyers 2024 list. Super Lawyers is an exclusive list that honors less than 5 percent of attorneys in the entire state of Florida. Super Lawyers is a research-driven and peer-conducted rating system that is part of Thomson Reuters. Only the most outstanding lawyers with substantial professional achievement are chosen by their peers to represent Super Lawyers. With their patented multiphase selection process, this honor reinforces our lawyers’ high standings both with the clients we work with and the legal community as a whole.
    • Our firm has been recognized as ‘Best Law Firm’ and ‘Best Estate Law’ by the Tampa Bay Times’ Best of the Best People’s Choice Award. Our firm has been the recipient of the Tampa Bay Times’ Best of the Best People’s Choice Award consecutively over the last five years. This award is a community voting based contest that chooses the best businesses, companies and services in Tampa Bay. Every year, the Tampa community members cast over 135,000 votes to choose the top businesses in the area. We are honored to have our efforts in Criminal Defense law be recognized by the people of Tampa Bay.

     

    St. Petersburg Estate Planning and Probate Attorney stands out due to our commitment to client success and our extensive expertise in estate planning law. Our attorneys have consistently secured favorable outcomes for clients, earning reputations for diligence, compassion, and legal acumen. Simply put, they are the toughest around, but also fair.  Our firm is dedicated to providing personalized service, ensuring that each client receives the attention and support they deserve throughout their legal journey. You can count on our Estate Planning and Probate Attorney to have your back.

    I recently met with a client who had an existing revocable trust, who asked me to review the trust and to explain the dispositive provisions (what exactly would happen when he died).  After reviewing the trust with him, I asked what assets he had titled in the trust.  The client looked perplexed and said “What do you mean?”

    I explained that to maximize the probate avoidance benefits that a revocable trust provides, it is imperative that the trust be funded with assets.  In other words, the grantor of the trust should retitle certain types personal assets into the name of the trustee of the trust as soon as the trust is created.  It may be advantageous to name the trustee of the trust as the designated beneficiary of other types of assets.

    I reviewed a list of the client’s assets and advised him which assets should be retitled at this time and which should pass via beneficiary designation.

    This important, but often overlooked, step is critical to avoid probate, which is one of the primary reasons to create a trust (other reasons include estate tax planning, incapacity planning, asset protection, and spendthrift protection).

    By funding the trust now, thousands of dollars in probate fees and costs will be avoided in the future.

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    Our experienced Estate Planning & Probate Attorneys are available to answer any questions you might have. 

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