Becky Cholewka: One of the differences between using other law firms and coming here to Cholewka Law is that when we have clients who choose to do a trust‑based plan, we automatically include trust funding in that plan. When describing trust funding, I always like to give the analogy of a swimming pool.
The first thing we do when we have a trust is we create the trust document itself. That’s like building the structure of a swimming pool. It’s all the conduit and the piping and the plaster and the tile work. It’s the structure of the pool. But I always ask people, “Can you swim in your pool if you have not filled it up with water yet?” Of course, that answer is no, and a trust is the same. We do not get to take advantage of everything that a trust has to offer until we re-title your assets into the trust. That’s what we call trust funding.
Here at Cholewka Law, that second step is really important to us. Most law offices only do your real property into your trust, and will give you some instructions about how you can go about doing the rest of it. Here at Cholewka Law, we take the ownership of doing it all for you, because I want to make sure I’m giving you a plan that works. Giving you a document that is only halfway completed because we haven’t filled up your pool yet isn’t going to be good enough for me.
One of the latest statistics we’ve heard is that trusts nowadays are anywhere between 75 percent up to 93 percent unfunded, meaning the trust is in place, but the person’s assets are not listed in the trust. That means those families are now going through the probate process. I want to help my clients avoid that process, so not only do we build the structure of your trust, we’re also going to fill it up with all of your assets.
To have your current trust reviewed or to determine if a trust is the right fit for your estate planning goals, call us at 480-497-3770 to schedule a consultation with an attorney.