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Estate Planning and Trusts

Helping you leave a legacy for the people and causes that matter most.

Safeguarding Your Wealth and Protecting Your Family

At Creative Planning, our wealth managers collaborate with a team of in-house attorneys who draft custom trust and estate planning documents to help ensure your wishes are fully integrated with your financial plan.

Supporting Your Estate Planning Goals

Protect Assets

Manage Division of Assets

Avoid Probate

Maintain Privacy

Save Taxes

Pass Along More Wealth


Custom Strategies From an In-House Team of Attorneys

If you’re like many of our clients, it’s not enough to simply grow your assets. You also want to ensure those assets are available following your death to support your loved ones and the causes most important to you. We’re here to help ensure your estate planning goals are carried out according to your wishes.

Once our estate specialists understand your specific goals, we'll work with you to identify the right combination of documents to properly protect your assets and provide financial well-being for your loved ones.

Estate Planning Is an Important Component of Financial Planning

  • Clearly communicate your wishes with your loved ones in advance to avoid misunderstandings.
  • Ensure financial assets are available following your death to support your loved ones and the causes most important to you.
  • Maintain privacy and avoid the potentially time-consuming probate process.
  • Minimize taxes on your transferred wealth to make the most of your legacy.

Key Estate Planning Elements

Creative Planning offers a comprehensive suite of estate planning services designed to complement your financial plan. Your customized plan may consist of some or all of the below, depending on your situation:


Durable Powers of Attorney

Healthcare Powers of Attorney

Living Wills

Revocable Living Trusts

Irrevocable Trusts

Life Insurance Trusts

Charitable Trusts


Special Needs Trusts


What’s the Difference Between a Will and a Trust?

This is one of the most common estate planning questions we receive. Let us shed some light on the topic via this general overview:

#1: Trusts help you avoid probate, whereas wills don’t.

A key estate planning objective is to avoid the probate process. If you use only a will, chances are good your remaining assets will pass through probate.

#2: Trusts typically allow for much simpler tax planning than wills.

When you pass away, taxes will likely need to be paid at several levels (from local probate taxes to the federal estate tax). Using a trust allows you to anticipate these taxes.

#3: Wills are only effective after your death.

Wills are only relevant after the decedent has passed. Trusts (living trusts in particular) can be effective while you’re alive if you become unable to manage your own finances.

#4: Trusts require you to retitle assets.

A trust must own assets for it to work, which means you must retitle your assets in the trust’s name while you’re alive. When you use a will, assets remain in your name until you pass; afterward, the executor is responsible for retitling them to your estate.

#5: Trusts simply do more than wills.

As mentioned in #3 above, wills are only effective upon your death, so their usefulness is limited to the transfer of assets at that time. Trusts allow for more customization and can be written to suit almost any goal.

Read this article for more detail on the differences between wills and trusts.

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