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Protecting Your Children From Themselves: What You Need to Know

a mother and daughter sitting together

The world feels scary, and there are lots of uncertainties you can’t control. Thankfully you can control and protect your hard-earned assets for future generations with the help of estate planning. Putting a few things into place can make a life or death difference in your children's future. Plus, it can save you and your family thousands or even millions of dollars in taxes.

Our team of experienced attorneys explains how to protect your child during the estate planning process here:

Protecting Children from Themselves

You may think you don’t have an enormous amount of wealth to warrant an estate plan. However, if you own property in the Bay Area or anywhere in California, you probably have a sizable estate in equity alone –making it essential to protect your assets.

If you have underage children, it is important to put certain tools into place to protect them if you pass away unexpectedly. Without doing so, your underage children could inherit your estate when they turn 18. This may be a significant responsibility for a child who comes of age. For such reasons, it is vital that you put together the necessary tools to protect your children from themselves if they were to inherit your assets.

If your child isn’t under the age of 18, there are other unfavorable situations that could jeopardize their inheritance, such as:

  • Bad relationships/marriage

  • Divorce

  • Lawsuit

  • Bad judgment

  • Car accident or unexpected illness

What Can I Do to Protect My Children?

Putting estate planning tools into place to protect your children can be extremely beneficial. Regardless of what happens, your loved ones will have the resources they need to ensure your hard-earned assets are protected and will therefore protect them.

Below are a few tools you can implement in your estate plan to protect your children from themselves:

  • Special Needs Trust: If one of your children has a disability, your initial instinct might be to leave assets to the “healthy” children and have them take care of your child with special needs. However, you should consider creating a special needs trust. A special needs trust is designed to hold assets for the benefit of the disabled person without disturbing the eligibility for public services.

  • Don’t Leave Assets Directly to Kids: Even if you don’t have a “troubled” child, they could find themselves in unfavorable situations in the future, such as a lawsuit or a divorce. A great way to protect your child is by putting your assets in a dynasty trust. It’s a great way to avoid estate taxes and protect assets from many situations.

  • Family Protection Trust: A family protection trust allows you to name a 3rd party trustee to guide your child until they’ve reached a certain age and works as a “prenup” for up to three generations.

These are only a few of the many tools available to help you protect your children and grandchildren. Get in touch with us today at (650) 683-9200 to learn more!

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