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Why You Also Need a Trust

Don't Make Dying Harder Than It Needs to Be

By Suze Orman

I know this isn't going to win me any awards for being Suze Sunshine, but we need to talk about death. Yours. More to the point: I want to talk to you about what you need to do now so that when you die your family and friends have an easy time making sure your wishes are carried out. And if you follow my advice, you will also have a document that can take care of you if you become ill.

My guess is that right now many of you are assuming you already possess the document I am talking about. Not so fast. If you think the will you may have locked away in the safe deposit box is all you need, I am here to tell you that you could be seriously wrong.

Today, a plain old will is simply not the way to go in most cases. I believe just about everyone would be better off with a trust - a revocable trust, to be specific - rather than a will. I know, I know. You hear the word "trust" and you think, "Hey Suze, what are you smoking? I'm no Bill Gates or Oprah Winfrey, so why do I need a trust?"

My friends, revocable trusts aren't just for folks with oodles of zeros on their net worth statement. Check out my Should You Be Trusted? questionnaire at the end of this article. Anyone who answers YES to even one question should seriously consider getting a revocable trust. Before I explain how useful and smart a revocable trust is for you and your beneficiaries, I first want to make it abundantly clear why a will alone could be an expensive pain in the derriere.

Where There's Only A Will, Your Family Will Pay

A will is a legal document that states how you intend your assets to be distributed when you die; it identifies to whom you wish to leave your money and property (your estate). more...

Article also contains:

  • If You Love Your Family, Trust'em
  • No Kidding Around

Why a Will Isn't Enough

Don't Fall for the Lawyer's Will Power
Now I can bet the following is going to happen to a lot of you: After reading this article you'll head off to an estate attorney and tell her I convinced you to get a revocable trust. And then the lawyer will look at you like you're crazy and tell you all the money you can save by simply creating a will. more...

Article also contains:

  • Don't Fall for the Lawyer's Will Power
  • A Will is Useless Until You Die
  • Just Say No to JTWROS

Do You Need A Trust? 11 Questions to Ask Yourself

If you answer Yes to any of the questions, then you should seriously consider establishing a trust. more...

What a Good Lawyer Should Deliver

When you go to see a lawyer, this is how they should charge you and what they should do for you. more...

Wills and Trusts Checklist
To keep yourself on track to healthier personal finances, start here by printing out this checklist of important to-dos to protect you and your family in the worst case scenario.

Start Now!

Suze Orman has been called “a force in the world of personal finance” and a “one-woman financial advice powerhouse” by USA Today. She is the author of four consecutive New York Times bestsellers, including The Road to Wealth. Suze Orman, a Certified Financial Planner Professional®, directed the Suze Orman Financial Group from 1987-1997, served as Vice President of Investments for Prudential Bache Securities from 1983-87, and from 1980-83, was an Account Executive at Merrill Lynch.

Watch Suze every Saturday night on CNBC. Check for TV listings.

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 Next on Money Matters
Scammers and Spammers – Protecting Yourself and Your Money
By Suze Orman

·  Where There Is Only a Will, Your Family Will Pay
·  Is a Trust Right For You?
Next: September 6, 2004
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