Too often inheritances aren’t handled well. The kids, no matter their ages, often aren’t prepared to handle the money. It might be dissipated by expenses, taxes, creditors, bad decisions, and more. This article recommends preserving your estate by giving it to a trust instead of outright to your children. It lists the advantages of trusts and also some other tips about passing on your wealth.
Additional benefits of a trust: Heirs will still be able to access the money but it will be exempt from creditors. It will also be considered separate from the marital pool, which means if one of your children were to divorce, that money will not wind up in the hands of an ex-spouse.
If you own a 401(k) or IRA, you can also have the money transferred into an IRA trust. Similar to a regular trust, the assets are protected from bankruptcy, and withdrawals are managed by a trustee. And, that prevents an heir from treating an inherited IRA like a piggy bank upon the account owner’s death.