What Is a Living Trust?

A living trust lets you decide how your assets should be managed, both in your lifetime and after you're gone. Do you need one?

Grandparents play with their grandson in a pool.
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A living trust is a legal document you set up while you’re alive to ensure that the assets you put in the trust, such as real estate, stock and bond holdings, CDs, and jewelry, are distributed in the way you want after your death without your beneficiaries having to go through court probate to receive the assets you pass on to them.

A key benefit of a living trust, also known as a revocable trust, is you retain control of your assets and property in the trust during your lifetime. You can make changes to the trust, such as including a newborn as a beneficiary, adding or removing assets, or making changes as to who gets what. 

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Contributing Writer