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No. of Recommendations: 6
There are two major advantages to a trust:
1.) Allows the successor trustee to take over managing your assets for you in case of disability
2.) Avoids the cost of probate. This varies by state.

There's a 3rd advantage - keeps your affairs private. Wills are subject to probate and must be filed with the court making the will and all the assets public information. The terms of a trust, on the other hand, are private. It is also much harder to contest a trust than to contest a will.

We have had a trust since 1994 when the kids were 3 years old, and the driving force for us was to keep our affairs private, and particularly so that it would be difficult, if not impossible, for DH's sisters to contest anything is we died while the kids were minors. We have all the assets that can be included in a trust included in ours, so that means bank accounts, brokerage accounts, and the house. About the only things not in the trust would be the IRA's, cars, and miscellaneous personal property.
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