A trust is useful for avoiding probate and managing assets during and after your lifetime. However, if your only goal is to avoid probate, you might not need a trust. There are a number of ways to keep property out of probate without a trust.
Pay on Death: If you designate someone as a beneficiary on a financial account, the beneficiary can retrieve the funds without going through probate court.
Joint Ownership: Setting up a joint financial account or recording a deed with rights of survivorship allows the asset ownership to automatically transfer to the living owner upon death. However, there are a number of risks with joint ownership. For example, a creditor can file a garnishment against a joint bank account if a judgment has been entered against one of the account holders. An exception is for married couples. In Michigan, property jointly owned by married couples is protected from
Enhanced Life Estate (also known as Ladybird Deed): A lady bird deed allows you to fully own your home during your lifetime and transfer it automatically to the person named on the deed upon your death.
Redd Law, PLC can help you to determine if a trust or its alternatives are the best options for you. Contact us at 248-455-6383 to discuss your best plan.