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Estate planning and trust funds


Many Kent area residents have worked out their estate plan or are interested in creating an estate plan tailored to their own unique family. For many families, including children or grandchildren, an estate plan is one of the most important parts of preparing for the future. Setting up a trust fund is one way to transfer assets to children.

While once thought of as something the very rich do, a trust fund can make senseI n many financial situations. A trust fund ensures that a person's assets are transferred to the person that the person making them trust wants the property to go to. The trust can be used for a child's college costs, or to go toward a child's expenses after the grantor dies. They are also a good way to minimize estate taxes and avoid probate.

Setting up a trust fund usually involves the help of an estate planning attorney. The trust should have a goal, such as sending a child to college, and it should have beneficiaries named. An educational trust can help with college expenses while a revocable living trust is good for passing on assets in a cost-effective way. There are many different types of trusts that an estate planning attorney can help set up.

Once the trust is decided upon, it can be funded by real estate, cash, stocks, bonds and other assets, either as a lump sum or over time. Using trusts, a family can avoid the costs of probate and many estate taxes. An attorney who specializes in estate planning is skilled at offering their client the personalized attention they need in order to create an estate plan that works for their family and goals.

Source: fool.com, "Setting up a trust fund: What you need to know", Maurie Backman, Sept. 15, 2016

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