Does a revocable living trust or a will take precedence?
When considering the subject of revocable living trusts, it is important to understand which will take precedence in the event that property is left both in a Last Will and Testament and a revocable living trust. The revocable living trust will take precedence, as we will explain further. A living trust is established while a person is still alive and is a viable means of transferring property to a beneficiary while avoiding the probate process. A will is another way that a person may leave property to another person, but a will requires probate.
What happens if property was left to one person in a Last Will and Testament and the same property was left to another person through a revocable living trust? The living trust will take precedence, meaning the person left the property through the trust will receive the property, not the person named in the will. This applies regardless of which document was executed first. The trust takes precedence because the property was already transferred when the trust agreement was executed. The will does not allow for the transfer of property until the death of the owner. When a revocable living trust is established, property ownership is actually transferred to the trustee.