Going through a divorce is a difficult experience for all parties involved. Many issues can arise during a divorce proceeding, especially in reference to inheritance assets. The American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC) recently discussed ways to structure a trust that will protect descendants’ inheritance.
In a podcast, an ACTEC fellow went into detail discussing trust restructuring, as well as warning against including certain provisions, such as a mandatory distribution or withdrawal right. Excluding such provisions keeps the trust in the hands of beneficiaries and out of reach of creditors. The focal point of the podcast is to remind grantors to create a balanced trust in case of an unforeseen event, such as a divorce. When constructing a trust, it is crucial to consult with an estate lawyer who is familiar with estate law and ensure their client’s wishes are protected.
The podcast also reviews helpful distribution tips. One valuable recommendation is to ensure that non-beneficiaries have no rights in the trust. In a divorce, this is important because the former spouse will have no access to the assets. The grantor should outline their goals and intentions for the trust. A thorough trust will highlight the grantor’s requests so that nothing can be misconstrued or unprotected after their passing.
One should detail their objectives when consulting with a lawyer. Developing a trust is complicated, and many people do not consider the beneficiaries’ creditors. Everyone can benefit from a proper estate plan, especially if one is considering a divorce.
Attorney Joe Lastowka at Eckell, Sparks, Levy, Auerbach, Monte, Sloane, Matthews & Auslander, P.C. is an ACTEC fellow and an integral team member at our firm. Our legal team is ready to assist you with your trust. We will ensure your beneficiaries are protected and that your requests are fulfilled. For an initial consultation, complete our online form or call us at 610-565-3701. To listen to the full podcast, click here.