Many people’s estate plans consist only of a will. They may not need the protection of additional documents. However, many find that adding more instruments to their estate plan gives them more control over their legacy and extends more protection for their vulnerable family members.
Trusts are popular inclusions that give you control over the long-term use of estate assets and may limit the losses your family members experience when they inherit property. Which family members would most benefit from the inclusion of a trust in your estate plan?
Special needs family members
If you have a child or other close family member with special needs, a large inheritance may be hard for them to manage. Additionally, they could lose crucial state benefits, like housing support and Medicaid, because of their inheritance. A special needs trust can lead to an improved standard of living while still allowing them to receive benefits.
Addicted family members
Do you have a child or spouse struggling with alcohol abuse or dependent on prescription pain medication? These family members might misuse their inheritance and spend it to support their dangerous addiction. You can protect them by limiting their access to inherited resources by putting their inheritance in a trust.
Married family members
Imagine your child receives a huge inheritance, and then their spouse divorces them a year later. Your son- or daughter-in-law could lay claim to some of that inheritance even if you only left assets to your child. By creating a trust for your inheritance you want to leave your children, you reduce the chances that one of your in-laws could make a claim against those inherited assets in divorce court.
Knowing when including a trust would benefit your family can help you create a better estate plan.