I tell clients in my 'Emergency Estate Planning System' that a Will is a guaranteed ticket to probate court. I had a client (66 yrs old and Mom had a Will - the evil sister stole more than $476,899 from the estate )
The Trust is the only vehicle to bypass probate and have control over who your assets will be distributed to. Also, if you have younger beneficiary's, (ie. children) I ask my client's if it's ok to that 50% of that child's inheritance can go to the inlaw? Or worse yet, 100% to a creditor!! Yikes, don't leave this to chance.
Also, what many practicitioner's fail to clarify to clients is that you are 8 x more likely to become disabled than you are to die at work. The Trust has incapacity provisions to control your assets if you are disabled. The Will does not, the only way to do this is to go to probate court (and hire an attorney, pay thousands of dollars plus court costs)
Plus, NEVER place your IRA/Retirement Plan into your standard trust (if the plan is large enough) you should have an IRA Trust created for special asset protection, and stretch out options based on IRS guidelines.
Lastly, a Trust can not hold annuity's. they are created and transferred with whoever the beneficiary is (ie. usually spouses or kids), they are great financial tool with their 'guarantee's' but no asset protection when you die.
To your Life and Wealth,
Joseph J. Dadich, CPA, Esq. LLM FREE REPORT ' 15 Critical Mistakes your estate planning attorney makes and how to avoid them'tm firstname.lastname@example.org