We’ve all seen characters depicted in movies and television shows who were born with “silver spoons in their mouths.” Some of them develop character traits that are not especially pleasing. You may know some of these people in real life as well.
When you are given a financial advantage that you did not earn you may not develop your character in the optimal manner. Most of us know someone who was born on third base and thinks they’re smart. And even people who don’t behave poorly in any outward way can feel an inner-sense of having something they didn’t deserve or earn.
One way to leave financial resources to a loved one without taking the risk of totally spoiling this individual would be to create an incentive trust for his or her benefit. As the name implies, you include incentives when you draw up the trust agreement. These incentives must be satisfied before distributions from the trust will be administered by the trustee.
You can instill a work ethic in a beneficiary by including conditions such as a work requirement. You may state that the beneficiary will receive distributions equal to his or her earnings at work. Some people will increase distributions and control of the trust assets when the beneficiary reaches a certain age.
There can be multiple gradients along these lines such as a different structure when the beneficiary reaches the age of 30 and then more control at the age of 40.
If you are concerned about spoiling a loved one, an incentive trust could be a solution. To find out more, simply pick up the phone and arrange for a consultation with a licensed and experienced Oklahoma City estate planning lawyer.
Author, President and Founding Attorney
Parman & Easterday