Does a Trust Override a Will?

Let’s talk about whether a trust overrides a will. Before I answer that question, you got to understand what trust and a will is. 

A trust is basically a probate avoidance device where you avoid the courts and do this in a much faster and cheaper way once you pass away for your heirs. A will allows you to go to court and literally is an allowance because it’s a ticket to court. 

You must go to court if you only have a will. Or if you have a trust and everything is not in the trust then you’ll still need to go to court with the will to move it into the trust. If that’s what your will says. 

So it’s very important to make sure that you have a trust with the will, that’s a special kind of will called a “Pour-over will”. Now, what if you have both? What if you have a will and a trust and it says completely different things?

One the will says it goes here and there or it goes to X and Y. And the trust says it goes to B and C. What happens? Well, anything that’s in the trust will go to B and C. Anything that’s not in the trust will go to X and Y. 

You should have them matched up, but a lot of people don’t do that, because they have bad legal advice or they just didn’t do it properly. So, obviously you need a trust and a will? You need both usually especially here in California if you own assets over $150,000. 

But can you have a will that goes one way and a trust that goes one way? Absolutely. It’s just going to cause a headache in the future.

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