It is wise to consider the recipients when you are planning your estate. On the surface it can seem as though estate planning involves a pie that you are slicing up so that you can give pieces of this pie to the people on your inheritance list. However, the slices can be delivered in various different ways and the best way may vary depending on the proclivities of the person receiving the slice.
Some people don’t respond very well to receiving a large influx of money that they did not earn. We can all envision an arrogant or overly self-satisfied individual who could have developed these traits as a result of receiving a large inheritance. This is something that most people would not want to facilitate.
But short of this a sincere and relatively humble person could experience an underlying sense of conflict if he or she was to come into sudden wealth that was not earned. Granted, this may be a pleasant problem but it can be troubling to many people and we have all seen examples of high-profile individuals who had plenty of financial resources live troubled lives.
One thing you may want to consider if you have concerns about spoiling an heir would be to provide for this individual via the creation of an incentive trust. With these trusts you include conditions that must be met before distributions will be made. These conditions can guide the beneficiary toward a path of personal achievement.
For example, you could allow for distributions that are tied to academic or career benchmarks. You have the control and you can stipulate anything that you think would be useful to the beneficiary in the long run.
Incentive trusts can provide a solution for some people. Don’t hesitate to pick up the phone to set up a meeting with an experienced Somerset County estate planning lawyer if you would like to learn more about them.