Massachusetts residents may not realize that it is not only the wealthy who benefit from the use of trusts. In reality, anyone can benefit from using a trust as part of a comprehensive estate plan. One group of people who could benefit from the use of a trust, such as a revocable trust, are single parents.
A revocable trust is created during the life of the grantor. In most cases, he or she retains control of his or her assets. Another person is also named in the trust who will take over the management of the trust if the grantor passes away or becomes incapacitated. This allows a single parent's children to continue to be provided for with little interruption because the assets in the trust do not have to go through probate.
It is not necessary, however, for the person appointed in the trust to also be the guardian of the children. A single parent has the opportunity to, essentially, put together a team of people to ensure that his or her children have the tools to not only survive but also to thrive, if that is his or her choice. Further, as the children reach the age of majority, the provisions of the trust can help them receive the maximum benefits from the assets in the trust by dictating when they receive distributions.
Along with other estate planning documents, a revocable trust can give a Massachusetts single parent the peace of mind that his or her children are given the best possible opportunity to succeed in his or her absence. No one likes to consider not being able to see his or her children grow up and become adults, but, as long as the possibility exists, estate planning is needed. Single parents face many day-to-day challenges and worrying about what will happen to their children if they are unable to care for them should not have to be a concern.
Source: The Huffington Post, "Estate Planning and the Single Parent", Alexandra Smyser, Jan. 16, 2015