Skip to Content

We are a Veteran Owned Business, providing 20% discounts for Veterans, First Responders, Elementary and High School teachers. Please contact us to set up a phone or Zoom meeting. Taking care of you and your family, It's What We Do!

What Sets a Living Trust Apart?

Posted on Mon Jun 10, 2019, on Estate Planning

Estate Lawyer in Allentown, PA

When making out an estate plan, you have many options available to you, so much so that the choices may seem overwhelming at times. You may wonder whether you should have a living trust or a will. In some cases, the answer turns out to be that you should have both! You need the information an estate planning lawyer provides to help you decide. It may be helpful to understand what a living trust is and how it differs from other estate planning tools.  Let’s talk about What Sets a Living Trust Apart.

What Is a Living Trust?

A living trust has many essential features in common with other types of trusts:

  • A trustee holds the assets, but unlike other trusts, you are typically the trustee.
  • The trust terms guide the trustee as to the use/distribution of the property, typically expansive powers.
  • The trustee (you) manages the assets in the trust and uses them for the beneficiary (you).

The main difference between a living trust and other trust types is that you maintain control over the assets contained within as long as you are alive. The trustee manages the property in the trust for your benefit until you die. Following your death, the property transfers according to your instructions to the trust’s beneficiaries.

What Are the Differences Between a Revocable and an Irrevocable Trusts?

Some people mistakenly equate a living trust with an irrevocable trust. The principal difference is that a revocable trust is “revocable.”  If you change your mind or experience an alteration to your circumstances, you can take back all the assets into your name. Further, you can easily make changes to a revocable trust at any time. In the alternative, it is difficult and sometimes impossible to change an irrevocable trust once its creation. For this reason, it is crucial to receive the help of an experienced estate planning attorney when creating an irrevocable trust.  Irrevocable Trusts are excellent tools but use professional guidance.

Follow this link for more information about Irrevocable Trusts.

How Is a Living Trust Different From a Will?

A will and a trust both allow you to transfer property to named beneficiaries. Nevertheless, there are some significant differences between the two. Perhaps the most fundamental difference is that the terms of a living trust provide advantages during your life and after your death. By contrast, your death is the only circumstance under which a will goes into effect.

Initially, it costs less to make out a will than it does to create a trust. However, an irrevocable trust may save your loved ones in estate taxes after you are gone. Additionally, a trust does not have to go through the probate process, meaning that the transfer of property can be faster and smoother.  

Follow this link for more information about Revocable Trusts.  This more extensive article helps explain What Sets a Living Trust Apart.

What Sets a Living Trust Apart?

A living trust can accomplish things that a traditional will cannot.  But these advantages might not outweigh the additional costs. A proper review of your situation, assets, and goals will reveal which tools are best. We have offices in Philadelphia, Doylestown, Cherry Hill, King of Prussia, and Allentown.  We can help!

Contact an estate lawyer in Allentown, PA for more information.

Contact Klenk Law for their insight into estate planning and living trusts.


Estate Planning, Estate Planning Attorney, Estate Planning Lawyer

Peter KlenkPeter Klenk

What Our clients are saying

Klenk Law Logo

A Google User

Peter is a model attorney who puts his clients first at all costs. His extensive expertise in estate planning and tax planning was a great comfort as we began, and have expanded, our family. He is very thoughtful, generous, and quick witted. His approach towards his business has been an inspiration to his peer group, and his zest for life is extremely infectious. Without reservation, I highly recommend Peter as trusted and cherished counsel

Klenk Law Logo

A Google User

Peter Klenk & Associates is my go-to firm for estate planning and advice in probate and estate administration. Peter and his attorneys are top-notch and exceptionally responsive. Peter has the knack of being able to explain extremely complex tax and estate planning issues in a manner that clients are easily able to understand and comprehend allowing them to confidently make important decisions.

Klenk Law Logo


I met Peter soon after he started his practice in Philadelphia, PA. He and his team have always been there for me and my various inquiries throughout my life-changing events, corporate relocations. I have lived in various cities throughout the nation, I have never had a problem in contacting Peter or a member of his team. He and his office responds quickly and returns calls to me to fulfill my requests for information or to revise my estate needs while posing relevant thought-provoking questions that I need to consider to secure my future. One of Peter's best qualities is his ability to answer clients complicated questions in a simple way to ensure comprehension.

Klenk Law Logo

Sheldon P.

Everything about my experience was a 10+! Peter and his staff made what I thought would be a difficult process easy and understandable. Every detail was handled correctly. No other firm could possibly do better than Klenk Law!

Klenk Law Logo


Peter and his associates made things easy for us.

Let us put our expertise to work for you.

Free consultation within 24 hours.