Trusts are a second-tier estate planning tool that can be beneficial under certain circumstances. For example, marital trusts can be helpful when a couple wishes to exercise greater control over the distribution of their estate for their children. Divorced parents often utilize a trust to appoint a trustee to manage estate assets for children rather than leave it to a prior partner to manage such funds. Another consideration may be protecting assets for children when entering into a second marriage.
When thinking about setting up a revocable trust for your children, here are some issues to consider:
- Do you want someone other than your child’s guardian or other parent to manage your estate funds for your children?
- Do you wish to set parameters around how your estate assets can be used for your children—for example, for private school or travel?
- Do you wish to set age limits for when your children receive estate assets—for example, 50% at age 21 and the remainder at age 30?
A properly funded trust can result in avoiding probate of an estate as estate assets should be administered through the trust.
A trust can be an initial part of your estate plan or you may add it at a later time with any necessary amendments to your will, as your family or assets change and grow.
We are also able to offer trust planning for individuals with special needs—commonly called Special Needs or Supplemental Needs Trusts. These trusts can be used to provide funds for individuals with special needs without jeopardizing eligibility for public benefits.