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Greenwich, CT will, trust, and probate attorney

You may be surprised to learn that about 6 out of 10 U.S. adults do not have a will. There are a multitude of benefits associated with creating a last will and testament, but many Americans procrastinate creating a will, trust, or other estate planning documents until it is too late. Understandably, it can be uncomfortable to consider what will happen to your assets when you pass away. However, dying without an estate plan, called dying intestate, places a huge burden on your loved ones and takes away the ability to make your own decisions about how your property is passed down to heirs. If you are ready to start creating an estate plan, you may wonder, “What is the difference between a will and a trust?” Both of these estate planning tools carry certain advantages and disadvantages, so it is important to make an informed decision about the type of estate planning documents you use.

Last Will and Testament

When most people think of estate planning, they usually think of the term "last will and testament." Creating a will allows you to decide how your assets are distributed to heirs and eliminates the responsibility put on family members. A will also allows you to assign guardianship of minor children if something should happen to you and your children’s other parent. Without a will or other estate planning document, your property will be allocated according to state law. A last will and testament takes effect when the testator, or person who created the will, passes away. Unlike trusts, property passing under the terms of a will requires probate. Probate is the legal process during which:

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