The advantages of a living trust

Estate & Tax Attorney Stefanie Lipson shares advice on the two main advantages of using a Living Trust in comparison to using a Will
The Advantages Of A Living Trust - Estate Planning Advice
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The advantages of a living trust

There are two main advantages of a Living Trust. The first is that when you pass away, all of your assets are distributed according to the terms of the trust, without the need for going to Court. The Successor Trustee, who you've picked during your lifetime, steps in and manages the assets and distributes them according to what the document says, without obtaining a Court Order, in order for them to pass according to your wishes. The second main advantage is actually during your lifetime; whereas, a Will doesn't become effective until you pass away, the Trust is immediately effective. So, in the event of if you were to become incapacitated during your lifetime, the Successor Trustee can step in and administer the assets for your benefit, and make sure they are available for your support. If you didn't have a Successor Trustee, you would likely need to get a Power of Attorney to manage the assets for your benefit, or a Conservator or Guardian; but because you have a Trust in place, all of the assets are owned by the Trust and the Successor Trustee can step in and administer them for your benefit, as if you were able to administer them yourself.

Estate & Tax Attorney Stefanie Lipson shares advice on the two main advantages of using a Living Trust in comparison to using a Will


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Stefanie Lipson

Estate & Tax Attorney

Stefanie J. Lipson is an attorney in the Family Wealth Planning Group of Greenberg, Glusker, Fields, Claman, & Machtinger, LLP.  Stefanie’s practice focuses on comprehensive estate planning for high net worth individuals, family business succession planning, probate and trust administration and the law of tax exempt organizations.  Stefanie counsels her clients with a holistic approach to wealth transfer solutions, structuring plans to meet a family’s individual needs while addressing the complex estate, gift and income tax implications of wealth transfer.  In addition, consistent with Stefanie’s belief that the most effective estate planning begins early, Stefanie has developed an estate planning program designed specifically to meet the planning needs of young families as they encounter common life events. 

Stefanie’s unique approach and application of Trust and Estate law has been well acknowledged by the legal community.  She served as a panelist at the 2010 Southern California Tax and Estate Planning Forum in a discussion involving multijurisdictional issues in estate planning and has authored publications for The Los Angeles Daily Journal and The Recorder.  Stefanie has been listed in Southern California Rising Stars each year since 2009.

Stefanie received her Bachelor of Arts in 2003 from University of California Los Angeles, graduating magna cum laude with the distinction of departmental honors and a member of Phi Beta Kappa.  Stefanie received her J.D. from the University of Southern California Law Center in 2006.  Following her graduation from USC, Stefanie clerked for the Honorable Fred Keiser, Jr. in the New Jersey Superior Court, Family Law Division.  During her time with the court, Stefanie also served as a court appointed mediator for small claims civil matters. 

In furtherance of her estate planning work, Stefanie is currently pursuing a Master of Laws in Taxation (LL.M.) from New York University School of Law.  Stefanie’s studies at NYU focus on estate, gift and income tax matters relating to wealth succession planning and family business ownership.

Stefanie lives in Los Angeles, with her husband Marc and their new son Noah, whom she regards as her greatest achievement.

Guardianship, Wills and Trusts
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