Myth #3: Wills are the best estate-planning tool.
Wills can be the best estate-planning tool for certain clients, but that’s not always the case. In fact, many Americans don’t know whether they need a will or trust. According to WealthCounsel’s survey, 47 percent of Americans consider a trust to be the better option, while 53 percent believe that a will would best do the job.
Attorneys must convey there are benefits to both wills and trusts. What’s right for one client might not be right for another. A will is a legal document that can help clients designate who will receive their assets after death or name guardians for their children. However, wills don’t avoid the probate process. They also become public record during probate and might reveal personal details that clients would rather keep confidential.
Trusts, on the other hand, become valid on execution. On death, the assets in the trust are passed directly to a trustee, avoiding the probate process. Trusts then don’t become part of the public record either.