If anasset is left out of a trust, must it go through probate?

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If anasset is left out of a trust, must it go through probate?

Approximately, 3 years ago mother set up revocable living trust and I forgot to put a credit union account into trust, though I did put bank account and house in trust’s name. I had POA and am now successor trustee. Mother died in July. Brother is now screaming at me that credit union account will have to go through probate. Is he right? Can I go into the credit union now and submit trust paperwork and say that I forgot to do it before? Credit union money is in a CD. At maturity, can’t I just get a check and deposit it into bank account which is in trust’s name and then distribute funds as per the trust document.

Asked on August 18, 2010 under Estate Planning, Massachusetts

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss.  Unfortunately he is correct.  Assets that have been left out of a trust have to go through the probate process.  Some parties have a Will "in case" that has a provision that allows for the transfer of assets in to a trust at death.  This is known as a "pour over" Will.  May I ask: is there a beneficiary on the CD? Or a joint account holder listed?  That may prevent it from going through probate.  If the amount is small then you may be able to do a Small Estate proceeding.  I would consult with an attorney and bring the Will, if any, the trust and the information on the CD so that you can figure out the easiest way to deal with it.  Good luck.


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