Don't Forget Wills and Trusts in Your Retirement and Estate Planning.

Wills and trusts do more than leave money to your heirs. Putting these in place can ensure your wishes are carried out. It can save your family from bureaucratic red tape. Most importantly, it can help you take good care of your family after you’re gone.

That’s why we believe wills and trusts play an important role in your retirement and estate planning. Both have different advantages and how you use them may vary depending on your unique situation. Now is the time to explore all your options regarding wills and trusts and learn how they could affect your heirs’ finances—and your retirement savings.

What Is the Difference between Wills and Trusts?

Both wills and trusts allow you to name beneficiaries for your property, but there are a few key differences to keep in mind.


A will is a legal document that directs the distribution of your property after you die. Its terms do not stay private as it becomes a public document after your death.

A will can be used to:

  • Name an executor
  • Name a guardian for children
  • Specify last wishes and funeral arrangements

A will does not cover property held in joint tenancy or in a trust.

A will has to pass through probate and takes effect when you die.


A trust is a legal arrangement that allows a person or organization to hold property for another person, persons or organization.

A trust can:

  • Provide tax savings
  • Offer protection from court proceedings
  • Create a plan for disability, or provide for disabled family members without disqualifying them from government benefits

A trust only covers property that has been put in the name of the trust, and it never includes everything you own.

A trust does not need to pass through probate and takes effect at the time you create it.

Do You Need a Will, a Trust, or Both?

Most people need a will, including those who use trusts. But there are different types of wills, as well as different types of trusts. What’s the best choice for you and your heirs?

We can help you review your options regarding wills and trusts. As a firm that specializes in retirement, we can guide you through the important steps of retirement and estate planning, including:

  • Naming or updating beneficiaries on all your retirement plans, life insurance, and financial accounts
  • Making sure your accounts are accessible to your heirs
  • Preparing for diminished capacity
  • Creating spending plans for your surviving family

We’re ready to help with reviewing your retirement and estate planning.