Probate attorneys assist with the transfer of assets during probate, which can take a year or more to complete, according to Investopedia. Many different steps are involved and complications may emerge. An issue that frequently arises in probates is what happens when money or property is left to someone underage.
Generally, a minor under 18 is not legally able to inherit and manage his or her own money. This means special steps must be taken if money is being left to a minor. If you are making an estate plan and want to control what happens to the assets you leave to an underaged loved one, you should work with Parman & Easterday to understand the tools to use for transferring an inheritance.
If you are involved in a probate in which a minor will be inheriting funds, our legal team can help you understand the process and assist you with protecting your rights, the wishes of the deceased, and the rights of the child during this process. To find out more about how our firm can help you, call today.
What Happens When Money Is Left To Someone Who Is Underage?
If money is left to a child under 18, usually the court will appoint a guardian to manage the funds on the child’s behalf. The person selected has a fiduciary duty to manage the money in a responsible way and to use it for the child’s best interests. The guardian must keep an accounting of how the child’s assets are spent and some families find this court involvement in the guardianship process burdensome. Then the child typically inherits the entire sum at 18, which can be a problem when the child is suddenly entrusted with a large sum of money he or she is too young to manage responsibly.
One way to avoid this problem is to use the Uniform Transfers to Minors Act, as transferring money under the UTMA allows the person leaving the money to the child to name a guardian to manage the funds and to specify when the child will inherit the funds, normally much later than his or her 18th birthday.
Another option would be to transfer the assets into a trust with the child named as the beneficiary. The trust creator names a trustee to manage the funds and creates a detailed trust document specifying where, when and how the money is to be used or to be transferred to the child. Parman & Easterday can help with trust creation, with using the UTMA, or with otherwise planning for the transfer of assets to a child.
How Can Probate Attorneys Help You?
Probate attorneys at Parman & Easterday can provide invaluable assistance with the probate process. No matter what complications or questions arise, our legal team will provide the guidance and support you need to protect your rights during the process. We can represent the executor of an estate, heirs or beneficiaries, and others who have an interest in the probate proceedings. We also provide help with estate planning if you want to avoid the need for probate all together.
To learn more about the services we provide and how our compassionate and knowledgeable legal team can help you, give us a call today at (405) 843-6100 or contact us online. You can also join us for a free seminar to get personalized help with all of your estate planning needs or with the entirety of the probate process. Just give us a call today to find out what our legal team can do for you.