i’m 85 years old woman in California USA, and i already setup the living trust, should i make a will also?

In most cases, even if you have a living trust in California, it’s still advisable to create a will. Here’s why:

  • Assets Outside the Trust: A living trust allows you to avoid probate for assets titled in the trust’s name. However, you might have some assets that haven’t been transferred to the trust, such as certain retirement accounts or jointly owned property. A will can specify how these remaining assets should be distributed after your death.

  • Beneficiary Designation: While the trust outlines your wishes for most assets, a will can be helpful for naming beneficiaries for specific items not easily transferable to a trust, like sentimental jewelry or a car.

  • Guardianship for Minor Children: If you have minor children, a will allows you to appoint a guardian who will care for them if you and the other parent are no longer alive. A living trust typically doesn’t address guardianship.

  • Contingency Plans: A will can serve as a backup plan in case your living trust becomes invalidated for some reason. It ensures your wishes are still carried out, even in unforeseen circumstances.

  • Naming an Executor: Both a will and a living trust require an appointed person (executor or successor trustee) to manage the assets after your passing. A will allows you to name an executor specifically for handling any assets outside the trust.

Here’s a recommendation:

  • Consult with an estate planning attorney in California. They can review your specific situation, the contents of your living trust, and advise you on whether a will is still necessary for your circumstances.

An attorney can also ensure your will and living trust work together effectively to achieve your overall estate planning goals.

Here are some additional resources that you might find helpful:

I understand that at 85 years old, you may want to have everything in order. By consulting with an attorney and potentially creating a will to complement your living trust, you can ensure your wishes are clearly documented and your loved ones are taken care of after you’re gone.

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