When creating your Virginia estate plan, you have options, and different estate planning tools enable you to accomplish different estate planning objectives. Many people working on their estate plans choose to create wills, irrevocable trusts, or both along the way. However, there are some key differences between the two and also some clear advantages associated with each.
Per Yahoo Finance, understanding the nuances that exist between wills and irrevocable trusts may help you determine what course of estate planning actions is right for you.
A will allows you to outline your wishes in terms of what happens after your death. In a will, you may name a guardian for any children you have, make distributions of your assets and otherwise make plans for after your passing. You need to take certain steps to make sure Virginia recognizes your will as valid.
A trust is another estate planning tool that gives you control over what happens to your assets once you die – or even before that. While an irrevocable trust comes into play once you die, you may also create the trust and add stipulations about what should happen if you become incapacitated but do not die.
An irrevocable trust may help your loved ones avoid probate, which may take time and money away from them. It also gives your assets a degree of protection against lawsuits or judgments, among other benefits.
Arguably the biggest difference between wills and irrevocable trusts is flexibility. As the name implies, an irrevocable trust is not typically changeable. However, an irrevocable trust may offer more protection than a traditional will provides.