Life Estates as Part of Estate Planning

A Life Estate allows you to provide a residence for someone for the duration of their lifetime.

Life Estates are an important tool when creating an estate plan. They allow someone to provide a residence for someone during that persons lifetime, but once that person has declined the Life Estate, or has passed away, that real estate would then go to the beneficiary(s) listed in the estate plan. During the Life Estate, the real estate is owned by the trust.

Common Uses:

  • A person marries later in life and plans on leaving the family home to their children. A Life Estate would allow the new spouse to continue to live in the home for the duration of their life, and then it would go to the children
  • A parent may want to set up a Life Estate for a specific child, but then leave the home to the other children upon their passing

A Life Estate can be set up in our estate planning software for either jointly owned or separately owned real estate. You will have the ability to indicate if the estate, or the recipient of the Life Estate is responsible for expenses.

How to set up a Life Estate:

  • Indicate the desire for the life estate by toggling Yes
  • Add the complete address for the property
  • Indicate who the beneficiary is
  • Indicate who will be responsible for expenses, the estate or the beneficiary

Life Estate