Estate Planning

Does My Revocable Living Trust Avoid Ancillary Probate?

If fully moneyed, your revocable living trust prevents both probate, in your state of home when you pass away, and ancillary probate, in any other state where you own property. If you do not fund your trust, it will NOT prevent probate anywhere.

The term “secondary probate” is utilized to explain probate in a state aside from the state of your last house. If you own a house in Florida in your individual name, however you live and pass away in New York, supplementary probate will be held in Florida and probate will be held in New York.
Ancillary probate implies 2 attorneys (one licensed in each state), two courts and two executors or administrators (one in each state), 2 sets of fees, and, possibly, even two different sets of successors (if state intestacy laws apply.)

You can completely prevent probate and supplementary probate with a totally funded revocable living trust. “Completely funded” suggests that all of your properties have been moneyed, or transferred, into the trust.
Non-retirement assets with titles have the titles changed to the name of the trust. For example, Brad Pitt’s checking account would not stay in his name, Brad Pitt, but rather would be transferred to the name of his trust, Brad Pitt, Sole Trustee, or his followers in trust, under the Brad Pitt Living Trust, dated June 3, 2011.

In addition, Brad Pitt’s retirement possessions, life insurance, and annuities would not name Angelina Jolie as the recipient, but rather would name Brad’s trust, Brad Pitt, Sole Trustee, or his followers in trust, under the Brad Pitt Living Trust, dated June 3, 2011. By doing this, all assets would be managed by the provisions in the trust.
Assets that typically trigger supplementary probate are time shares, vacation houses, condos, and any personal effects such as house furnishings and vehicles owned in another state.

If you want to prevent probate and secondary probate, ensure that your revocable living trust is fully funded and speak with a qualified estate planning attorney.