Are Online Trust Services Worth It?


Yes, you can use an online service to do your own Living Trust, BUT I STRONGLY ADVISE AGAINST IT because they WILL NOT complete and file all of the documents required in California, such as a Grant Deed to transfer your home to your trust along with any additional forms required by your county such as a Preliminary Change of Ownership form.  Some counties now even require a DOCUMENTARY TRANSFER TAX AFFIDAVIT to be filed in addition to your Grant Deed.  Do you think the online service will tell you this, or will you find out after the County Recorder rejects your documents for recording?

Can you call up the online service if you have a question and get someone on the phone to answer that question in about 10 seconds? If you hire me as your Attorney you can.

They probably won’t even tell you that you should have a special Will called a Pour-over Will to go along with your Trust, or the price goes up if they do.  In most cases, you should also have a Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care, and a Durable Power of Attorney for Finance. Again, they will charge you extra for these documents, all of which I include at no extra charge.  So where’s the big savings?

Failing to do all the paperwork correctly, or not having all the required paperwork is just not worth it to most folks when, for just a few dollars more, they can meet with me in person and have ALL their documents prepared personally by me for a reasonable fee.

In summary, I’ve never really seen any great savings with these online services and have even seen folks have to pay a second time with an experienced attorney to get all documents correctly drafted.


Give my office a call today at 909-754-8370 for a free telephone consultation.
Serving San Bernardino, Riverside, Orange, and L.A. Counties for over 20 years.