Trust administration matters: Doing what is best for each child

Most Georgia parents want to treat their children the same when it comes to an inheritance since they do not want any child to feel that another is more "loved" or important. However, there are cases where doing what is best for each child means treating each of them differently. Fortunately, trust administration also allows parents to make arrangements for each child that will serve them in the best way possible.

For instance, an outright inheritance could jeopardize any government benefits and programs available to a child with special needs. Putting that child's inheritance into a trust protects those options and allows for the payment of extra expenses to make his or her life more comfortable. A special needs child might also not be capable of managing the assets alone, depending on the circumstances, and a trust can prevent its assets from being unintentionally squandered. A child suffering from mental health issues or an addiction might have the same needs.

In other cases, the events of a child's life make it necessary to protect his or her inheritance. A divorce, bankruptcy or other money troubles would jeopardize an inheritance. If the assets are held in a trust, they can benefit the child without others -- creditors, an ex-spouse and others -- being able to get to them.

Regardless of a child's circumstances, creating a trust helps ensure access to an inheritance without any outside distractions. Trust administration can include certain instructions regarding how, when and for what distributions are made. This arrangement provides Georgia parents with the peace of mind that they are providing for their children in the best way possible.

Source: Wicked Local Westwood, "Five (good) reasons to treat your children differently in your estate plan", Suzanne Sayward, Jan. 9, 2017

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