Making The Complex

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Estate planning — leaving inheritances to minors

Leaving behind a legacy is a priority for many people in Louisiana. However, effectively planning inheritances for heirs might not be as clear cut as it seems. This is especially true when it comes to thinking about minors during estate planning.

It is understandable that parents and grandparents would want to include younger family members in their wills. Simply leaving an asset or money to a child can have unintended consequences, though, as he or she might not be old enough to directly receive the inheritance. A court would appoint a guardianship to manage it on his or her behalf in this situation, but it might not be who the testator — the person who created the will — would have chosen. There is also no way to guarantee that the asset is managed according to the testator’s wishes.

Creating a trust is a good option for someone who wants to leave an inheritance to a minor. Rather than leaving the asset or money directly to him or her, it would go into the trust instead. The settlor — the person who created the trust — would choose a trustee to manage everything according to his or her instructions. A trust also bypasses the succession process.

Trusts are useful for anyone who would like to bypass succession, not just those who are leaving inheritances to minors. They may also be ideal when leaving an inheritance to an heir who is an adult, but otherwise irresponsible with money. Properly creating and funding a trust is essential for a successful transfer of wealth though, so it may be prudent to learn more about. estate planning in Louisiana.


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