Living trust promoters often say that living trusts prevent will contests.
There is some truth to what they say, but it's not quite that simple.
First, despite the horror stories you hear, the truth is that will contests are quite rare.
So, unless your family is particularly contentious (or the distribution of your estate will be controversial) this is probably not a significant issue for you.
But it might be helpful to you to know that:
So, it's certainly not true that a living trust cannot be contested.
On the other hand, a living trust can reduce the chance of a dispute over the distribution of your estate.
The reason is that a living trust is more private than a will. Because the terms of a living trust are not generally available to the public (as they are with a will), it is less likely someone will contest the trust.
That’s just common sense.
Your relative is more likely to be upset, and challenge a will, when he knows he's getting less than someone else. If he's not exactly sure who's getting what, he'll be less likely to challenge the distribution of your estate, and certainly it will be more difficult for him to find a basis to sue over it.
The same thing goes for a creditor of the deceased or a creditor of a beneficiary. Particularly in today’s litigious society, privacy is an important factor in avoiding litigation.
The bottom line is that while a living trust cannot guarantee your estate distribution will not be challenged, it can lessen the likelihood of challenge. So, there is a nugget of truth to the statement that: "living trusts prevent will contests."
For more about the privacy advantage living trusts offer, read Privacy of a Living Trust.
We'd love to hear your comments or opinions. Submit them here and other visitors can read them and comment on them. An e-mail address is not required.
Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page...
Brother Trustee Used Money in Trust
My parents put their property/home (California) in a living revocable trust. My father died. It passed to my mother. Upon my father's death my brother …
How Can I See What Living Trust Says?
My father set up a living trust with my brother as the administrator. Now that my father is in a nursing home my brother is paying the bills out of the …
Grandmother Passed With No Will or Trust, Now What?
My grandmother passed away about a year ago, my aunt was living with her mother when she passed and claims there is no will or trust and that what money …
What Are My Rights as Executor and Trustee?
MY MOTHER PASSED LEAVING MY BROTHER AND I SOLE BENEFICIARIES, I'M THE EXECUTOR AND TRUSTEE OF THE WILL, CAN I MAKE MY MOM'S BOYFRIEND VACATE THE HOUSE? …
From Do Living Trusts Prevent Will Contests to Advantages of a Living Trust | Free Living Trust Information Blog | What is a Living Trust? | Disadvantages of a Living Trust | Living Trust Myths | Types of Living Trusts | Medicaid Trust | Trustee | Funding a Living Trust | Probate | Living Trust Taxes | Living Trust Examples | Living Trust Summary | Living Trust News | Living Trust Forum | Living Trust Books & Forms | Living Trust Attorneys | Living Trust Questions |