Frequently Asked Trust Questions
Q. What is a Trust?
A. A Trust is a powerful financial and lifestyle tool you create for your own benefit during your lifetime. It also provides important benefits beyond your lifetime. A living Trust transfers certain assets to your Trustee and provides direction on how you wish those assets managed and used for your living benefit and later for your heirs.
Q. What are the advantages of Revocable Living Trusts?
A. First, lifetime benefits. We can help in so many ways while you are living, like Investment Management, bill-paying services, and the services of a trusted financial advisor. Second, privacy and the avoidance of probate. Third, if you become incapacitated, a Trust sets a plan into motion. Your successor Trustee (or co-Trustee, if you named one) takes over for you to make sure you are cared for properly and with dignity. Fourth, Trustees are highly accepted by the financial, legal and medical communities. We can act for you when you cannot or when you want extra help. If you have property in other states, transferring it to a Revocable Living Trust avoids having to probate it in multiple states. Finally, a Living Revocable Trust is often a step in a larger tax and Estate Planning process that can shelter your assets from excessive taxation.
Q. Is it hard to set up a Living Trust?
A. NO! The only thing difficult about creating a Trust is "funding" the Trust. You must actually put assets into the Trust for it to do the things you want it to do. This can be time-consuming. That's where CoreFirst Bank & Trust can help you. We have a long history of working with ordinary people to fund their Trusts. Working together, we make it easy for you.
Q. Who should I name as beneficiaries, and who should be the Trustee?
A. Usually the creators of a Trust are named the primary beneficiaries of the Trust while living. Upon your death, the options are limitless, but children, grandchildren, and charitable entities are most often named as beneficiaries. While living, many people choose to serve as their own Trustee. If you are unable to manage your own affairs, another Trustee, known as the successor Trustee, takes over. However, many people simply enjoy the freedom and comfort that comes from naming CoreFirst Bank & Trust as their Trustee or co-Trustee right away.
Q. Will CoreFirst Bank & Trust draft a Revocable Living Trust for me and what will it cost?
A. An estate-planning attorney with experience should draft your Trust. At CoreFirst Bank & Trust we believe it is a conflict of interest to draft Estate Planning documents, and then serve as the Trustee or Executor. Our expertise is caring service as Trust Administrators, so we leave the drafting to the legal community. We would be pleased to suggest several highly qualified attorneys and to work with you as you create your Trust and supporting documents. Depending on the complexity of your estate plan a Revocable Living Trust might cost $1,000 to $2,500.00
Q. Why don’t we hear more about bank Trust and investment groups?
A. Banks are heavily regulated at the state and federal level, and until recently didn't market their Investment and Trust services. But times are changing in the financial services sector. Now with more competition, more customers are finding that CoreFirst Bank & Trust offers a wider range of products and services than our competitors at less cost.
Q. Aren’t Trust services for the rich?
A. That's a myth we fight every day. Most of our clients don't consider themselves wealthy. We invite you to contact us. If our services aren't right for you we will help you create a plan that makes the best sense for your circumstances.
Q. What does it cost?
A. Much, much less than other kinds of investment and financial services. Our fee is based on the market value of your account. Thus we have no interest in churning your account to increase commissions or to sell you a product you don't want. We want your account to grow. Our fees are small and vary depending on the service level you choose, but are always 1% or less per year.
Q. My broker doesn’t charge me anything. How?
A. There is no free lunch. Most brokers are paid commissions for buying and selling transactions in your account. If your account is not active they are not making money. In fact, many firms now charge an “inactivity fee” to hold your assets. In "no-load" funds there are still annual expenses. These come right out of your account so you never see the "bill." In most cases brokered commissions and expenses far exceed our low value-based fee.
Q. Aren’t Trust companies too conservative? Don’t brokers out-perform Trusts?
A. At CoreFirst Bank & Trust we invest depending on the needs of the individual customer. Your investment strategy is appropriate for your unique situation so investments may be conservative, aggressive or somewhere in between. Long-term research indicates that Trust investment managers are as good as or better than other money managers.
Q. What else do I need besides a Living Trust?
A. You will need a pour-over Will that tells your Executor to put any non-Trust assets into your Trust so they can be governed by the Trust’s provisions. You will want a Will to name guardians for minor children.
You will want a durable power of attorney for financial matters and a durable power of attorney for health care. Most estate plans now include a Living Will. A Living Will explains your wishes about life-sustaining medical care in the event you are terminally ill and unable to speak for yourself.