Here is our explanation: A trust is like a limousine. Silly answer? Think about it…
Imagine for a moment that all of your assets are boxes – your home is a box, your car is a box, your bank account is a box, and so on. You have this stack of “boxes” you’re carrying in your hands as you walk through life. If you should trip and fall (i.e. die or become disabled), what happens to the “boxes”? They fall all over the place, and you need a lawyer to help you gather them all up. If you’re alive and disabled, the “boxes” are picked up by your Power of Attorney. If you’re dead, they can be picked up by your executor after your heirs go to probate court.
You can avoid all that with a trust. When you establish a trust, it’s like getting a limousine to put your “boxes” (or assets) in. They all fit inside the limousine, nice and snug. You have total control over what goes in the limousine, where it goes, etc. If something should happen to you, the only thing you drop is the steering wheel. The “boxes” (your assets) are all still safely tucked inside the limousine.
Now, in the glove box of the limousine is your book of instructions. These instructions spell out in very specific terms what you want to have happen if you can no longer control your limousine full of assets. That is what a trust is, your book of instructions that keeps your assets together, and establishes a plan for what happens to them if you should become incapacitated or after you die.