Leaving an Inheritance to Minors

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While it’s not easy to think about, estate planning to provide for your children in case of an untimely death is vital. The consideration of who will raise them is only one factor to consider. You should also delegate what happens with any money or property you leave behind and who will manage the inheritance until they become adults. If you have young children, you may not think you are old enough to worry about making end-of-life plans. However, it’s never too early to begin making plans to secure your family’s future. When planning an inheritance and custody plan, hire a professional attorney to ensure your last will and trust are legally certified and uncontestable. 

Property Guardian

Unless you directly appoint a guardian for your children, the process will be settled in probate. The court process occurs when there is no legal will that expresses your wishes and the state handles your estate. 

While in most cases, the surviving parent will manage the property or inheritance until the child reaches adult age, this isn’t always the desired result. It’s essential to document your choice for your children’s property guardian legally. 

Set Up Trusts

Another strategic option is to set up a trust for each of your children. Within your will or living trust, appoint a trustee to oversee the minor’s inheritance until a specific age of your choosing. 

The trusted family member or friend is required to act in the beneficiary’s best interests while following your written instructions. Typically, a financial inheritance can be used to cover costs such as those for the child’s health, education, and living expenses.

Make sure to ask your chosen trustee if they are up for it, as the role requires regular challenges. For instance, they must file annual income tax returns for the trust. They are also limited to what’s allowed in the will, except for the section that outlines their authority. 

For this reason, they may be asked to bring the physical document to banks or other facilities when they attempt to perform business on behalf of the beneficiaries.

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