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Frequently Asked Questions

Our team specializes in simplifying the estate-planning process so you and your loved ones can feel certain about every decision. Start with this overview, and then book a consultation when you’re ready to talk more.
A “living” trust is created during your life to transfer your assets to your beneficiaries at your death without the need for Probate Court. Any California resident with children or who owns property should have a living trust. The person who creates the trust is usually the “Trustee” during his/her life and therefore retains full control of their assets. The “Successor Trustee” is nominated to manage and transfer assets after the owner’s death, according to the terms created by the owner during their life.
A trust is “revocable” if you can update and change the terms during your life. Most living trusts are revocable so that you have the flexibility to update the terms and conditions as necessary. A revocable trust becomes irrevocable upon your death- meaning no one can change the terms you decided on during life. An irrevocable trust cannot be changed during or after your life.
A trust avoids California Probate, while a will must be approved by the Probate Court to be effective. By avoiding probate, a trust avoids the cost and time of Probate Court. A trust passes property to beneficiaries quickly and privately, according to the terms of the trust. A typical Probate in California will take at least a year and the Probate attorney is paid a percentage of the value of the assets. A trust typically avoids the waiting period of Probate and the cost of a Probate attorney while also keeping the terms of the trust private.
When you create a living trust in California you must quitclaim the deed of your home into your trust. This transfer does not affect your mortgage OR your property taxes because it is not considered a change of ownership. You can still lease your house, sell your house or refinance/mortgage the property when it is in the trust.

Britton Law Group, P.C. is now Best Coast Estate Law, P.C.