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3 stipulations you could add to trusts

When creating your estate plan, you may already know that you would like to leave funds behind for the benefit of your children and grandchildren. Of course, if you have a considerable amount of money to distribute, you may not feel comfortable simply stating in a will that each individual shall receive a certain amount of that money. Therefore, you may find yourself exploring trusts as a planning option.

Trusts can oftentimes provide a greater sense of security when you hope to leave family members a considerable inheritance. When you worry about how your loved ones may spend the money, trusts can help you better ensure that they spend the funds in a manner of which you would approve.

Trust stipulations

When creating a trust, you can add stipulations that indicate when and how a beneficiary can access the funds in the account. This type of arrangement often goes by the name of an incentive trust as the funds act as an incentive for the surviving loved one to carry out the desired actions. Some examples of trust stipulations include:

  • Encouraging positive behavior - If you feel that a loved one has a tendency to veer toward questionable acts and decisions, you could stipulate that he or she cannot access the money if the individual carries out certain acts.
  • Lifestyle conditions - If you fear that a loved one has or may develop a dependency on drugs or alcohol, you may place a condition on the trust that indicates that he or she cannot have access to the funds if he or she uses illegal drugs, smokes or participates in other potentially unhealthy activities.
  • Age restrictions - Many people commonly use this type of restriction on trusts. Because you likely do not want a grandchild to inherit a considerable amount of money at an age at which he or she may not fully think through his or her actions when using the funds, you can state that the person cannot access the funds until he or she has reached a certain age. You may even stipulate the amount of money available as he or she reaches various ages.

Because you can create trusts to meet your specific needs, the stipulations you add to a trust can vary and be as specific as you desire. If you create multiple trusts, you can tailor the restrictions to fit the beneficiary.

Creating trusts

In order to create trusts with the specifications you desire, you may wish to find out more information on the proper way to do so. If you do not create your trusts correctly, the court may not consider them legally binding, and your surviving family may face issues.

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Leonard F. Berg, Attorney at Law