When it comes to your estate planning in Oregon, a trust may be the perfect solution you didn’t realize you needed.

Trusts aren’t just for the wealthy either. Everyday Oregonians can benefit from having a trust as part of their estate plan. The reason is simple: At its heart, a trust is simply an agreement that manages assets for a particular purpose. Typically, that purpose is to benefit a person or organization. That could be you, your spouse, your children, a relative with special needs, and/or your favorite charity.

Once your Eugene estate planning attorney has helped you set up your trust, these legal instruments are low maintenance but can provide a high level of benefits and protection for those you designate. Here are 3 reasons it just might turn out a trust is a perfect fit for your Oregon estate plan.

1. Trusts can help your estate with beneficial tax planning

Estates can bring home a tax impact to many Oregonians. If you have assets over $1,000,000 in Oregon, including real property such as your home, then a trust could be very useful to your estate plan. If business interests, investments, intellectual property, and/or other assets mean you could have an estate valued over a million dollars, then a trust can be essential.

A key reason? The more valuable your estate, the more potential tax liability you or your beneficiaries could face. Depending on the values and types of assets that may be in your estate, this could add up to a large tax bill. However, with the aid of a trust, that tax bill could be avoidable.

2. Trusts can make it easier to provide for children

Adoption, a prior marriage, stepchildren, special needs children, or other situations involving your family can complicate estates. A trust can provide for your family in the way you want, but without sacrificing other rights or protections.

For example, using a trust, you can place limits on payouts for monetary benefits. You could set a maximum amount per year. Or, you could make funds from gains eligible for payouts, but not from principal assets. A trust can also ensure that children from a prior relationship are not left out of the estate.

Does a child of yours have special needs? A special needs trust can provide financial benefit to that child. However, it can do so without compromising their eligibility for various state and/or federal benefits. Trusts give you powerful options to provide for your loved ones. The flexibility of a trust can work for virtually any family situation.

3. Trusts protect more of your privacy

Let’s be honest: Family situations can be messy. Some of that messiness can really come to a head after someone dies. While a trust can’t prevent all conflicts, it can do an end run around more than you might think.

The reason is simple: While the contents of an Oregon will become public record through probate court, the terms of a trust remain private. Instead of anyone and everyone potentially having a problem with your estate plan, a trust requires only that the beneficiaries receive notice.

As with providing for children, the flexibility of trusts makes them a powerful tool in your estate plan. You can customize your trust to essentially any allowable legal circumstance. It’s easier to have more granular control as well, such as bequeathing certain items to individual people or organizations.

In other words, trusts protect your privacy, safeguard your wishes, and can help prevent potential conflicts about your estate. Plus, since trusts don’t have to pass through probate, they can pay out benefits faster. That’s especially helpful to those who may need it most under your estate.

A trust could be perfect for your Oregon estate plan

When it comes to avoiding potential taxes, providing for your children, and protecting your privacy, a trust is a virtually perfect tool for Oregon estate plans. Once set up, maintenance time and cost is low. You can enjoy the peace of mind that comes with knowing you’ve set your wishes, which the terms of the trust will carry out.

And when it comes to trusts, you are more likely to need one than you might think, especially if you own real property or other assets in Oregon. How could a trust ease your mind and improve your estate plan?