Sunday, February 28, 2016
Living trusts are excellent vehicles to avoid probate for those with assets enough that the cost of avoidance outweighs the cost of creating the trust. But for many, living trust are not appropriate since they have little in the way of transferable assets that would make the setup cost worthwhile. But these very people are being targeted by unscrupulous legal services by offering gifts for signing up and conjuring up probate horror stories unlikely to apply to would be client's situation. In addition, once hooked on the trust service, the same victims are then lured into other financial services that cost much but produce little in the way of gain. One study pegged the annual cost to seniors by these flim-flam schemes at $17 billion which has lead consumer groups to up their efforts at educating the public about the limitations of living trusts for some. Let us hope their efforts bear fruit soon so seniors who can ill afford the expense do not fall prey.
See Michael Smith & Richard Barid, Seniors vulnerable to scams on trusts, Business in Savannah, February 24, 2016.
Special thanks to Brian Cohan (Attorney at Law, Law Offices of Brian J. Cohan, P.C.) for bringing this article to my attention.