In Jacksonville and around Florida we are often asked about the differences between a Florida Will and a Florida Revocable Trust. Although each persons circumstances are unique, generally the following factors tend to determine which is better in relation to disability and death in relation to the cost of a Florida Probate or avoiding Probate in Florida.
A Will tends to be the best tool if these issues fit your circumstances:
Limited cash flow Limited assets, including life insurance
A Trust tends to be the best tool if these issues fit your circumstances:
Older clients Large qualified retirement plans (IRA, 401k, 403b, etc.)
High cost / difficulty death probate state Simple, outright disposition of assets at death More sophisticated disposition of assets at death Privacy issues Possible or probable mental disability Desire to make everything as easy and inexpensive as possible for heirs Out-of-state real estate or timeshares Complicated disposition issues Out-of-state executors, trustees or guardians Tax planning Protection of inheritance for spouse, children and grandchildren Planning for couples on second or subsequent marriage Medicaid planning or qualification issues Planning for beneficiaries with “special needs”