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Trusts may help to protect one's wishes regarding assets

One concern of many Texas residents is how their values can be passed on to their kids and grandkids after their death. Likewise, individuals may be concerned about being able to pass their assets on to their loved ones. Trusts are helpful vehicles for ensuring that one's inheritance goes to the people intended to receive it.

When a person dies, his or her kids and grandkids naturally might want to keep some of his or her sentimental assets as reminders of the person. However, getting large amounts of money or high-value items might tempt them away from the values the deceased person had instilled in them. A trust can help to prevent this by making sure that the money that the kids and grandkids receive is not wasted. When an asset is held in trust, the deceased person's advice and admonitions about how the asset is to be used are gospel; they have to be complied with and respected in order for the kids or grandkids to receive funds or property from the trust.

Unlike a trust, a will usually distributes assets outright to beneficiaries or heirs. A person can include advice and admonitions about how these assets are to be used. However, because the assets have been distributed already, the beneficiaries may use their inheritance however they wish; this might include simply disregarding the deceased person's intentions and goals.

Estate planning is often a topic people wish to avoid because they naturally wish to focus on life instead of death. However, creating an estate plan allows a person to posthumously control what happens to his or her assets after death. Proper legal guidance may help people in Texas to set up trusts that meet their personal objectives.

Source: The Huffington Post, "Passing Values, Not Just Money, via Incentive Trusts", Steve Cook, Nov. 2, 2015

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