Princess Diana was one of the most famous people in the world when she passed away after a car accident in 1997. Prior to her death, she, like many people in Texas, had created an estate plan designed to ensure that her wishes for the distribution of her estate to her beneficiaries would be followed when she passed away. Though no one expected her to meet her death at such a young age, having an estate plan helped to define who would inherit from her and how.
Though most of us in Texas are unable to relate to the large value of the estate of a royal family member such as Princess Diana, the same estate planning tools that were available to her are available to those of us in our state. The princess made use of a will and trusts, both common estate planning tools. In her will, she left her $20.4 million in a trust for her beneficiaries -- her two sons.
The trust directed that the money be split equally between the princes when they turned 25. However, the trustee of her estate decided to change that age to 30 after the sudden death of their mother. This year, her oldest son, William, will turn 30 and inherit his share of the estate. The current value of the estate is an estimated $31 million.
Like Princess Diana did, many Texas residents can utilize wills, trusts and other tools to ensure their estates are well-rounded and comprehensive. Speaking to an experienced estate planning attorney may also be a good way to make sure you understand all of the options available to you.
Source: TODAY.com, "Prince William turns 30, gets $15.5 million Diana inheritance," Natalie Finn, June 20, 2012