If I have a will, do I need a living trust?

A will and a living trust are not mutually exclusive. In California, if you have a will and own property valued at more than $150,000, you probably also need a living trust to protect assets from probate. If you have a living trust, a will is still necessary to address assets that are not transferred to the living trust during your lifetime, including proceeds of life insurance policies and retirement accounts, in the event the named beneficiary predeceases you. In a will, you also name the executor for your estate and nominate guardians for minor children, as well as a trustee to administer assets the minor children may receive under the will.

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