The creation of a will and/or trust allows you to remain in control. Without either of these documents, the courts are given the power to decide what happens to your assets and your property — such as life insurance accounts, retirement accounts, bank accounts, your home and your car — and/or your minor children after you are incapacitated or die. This court-driven process is called probate. Probate is expensive, lengthy and public. Perhaps more importantly, the decisions made by the courts often deviate from what your actual wishes may be. By engaging in the estate planning process, you retain control over these very important decisions.