Discernment is key when estate planning with adult children

On Behalf of | Mar 16, 2018 | Estate Tax |

Just as it is important to plan for retirement, it is possibly even more important that people in the Georgia area carefully plan for the manner in which their estates will be handled upon their death. While there is no question that provisions should be made for minor children to ensure that someone is appointed to administer the estate to take care of them, all too often adult children are entrusted with more than they are capable of handling responsibly.

While reaching the age of adulthood often means that a person has become financially responsible, it is not always true for everyone. In fact, many mature, intelligent people lack money-management skills. Fortunately, such persons usually entrust their assets to money managers or financial advisors. Unfortunately, others do not.

It is for this reason that estate planning should include a careful assessment of adult children who may stand to inherit from the estate and determine whether they are capable of managing the assets prudently or if there is a risk that the assets may be squandered. If the latter is a possibility, provisions can be made to place those assets in a trust.

The trustee can be directed to stop distributions if he or she believes that the assets might be lost due to gambling or other irresponsible behavior. Similarly, the distributions could resume once the trustee sees that the behavior has improved.

Estate planning is serious business and can encompass a myriad of laws, estate tax, and other legal matters. For this reason, it may be a good idea to seek the counsel of a lawyer experienced in estate planning and other matters that may arise. This will help ensure that the assets acquired through a lifetime of careful money management will continue to benefit the futures of loved ones.

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