How do I support my kids if I become incapacitated or if I pass on?
I’m Michael Jenkins and as an estate planning attorney in San Diego, this is obviously a common question. It’s a large part of what we deal with and in this topic we’re really transitioning away from setting things up for the kids or as part of the kids estate and we’re really making sure that your own affairs are in order, so let’s take it piece by piece.
If we’re talking about periods of incapacity, what we’re really talking about is making sure that your financial and medical powers of attorney are in place so that we know who’s going to make decisions for you and we’ve given them the appropriate power that way the kids or the other family members don’t have to go to probate court and become your conservator. So making sure that your own powers of attorney are in place is the best way you can make sure you don’t become a burden on the kids if you do become incapacitated.
Now for talking about once you pass away, how do we continue to support the kids? The conversation there usually is: You know the kids are 18. They’re going to college. They’re doing great, they’re just not quite ready to receive an inheritance. If something were to happen to me and the conversation really turns around, how do we set up your living trust in a way that passes things onto the kids in a way that you want, but that makes most sense for them as well.
So common things we discuss here with clients are that the trust will give the property to the kids, not when they’re 18 years old, because nobody is ready to receive anything at 18 year old but at a later time. So a common one we use is they’ll get a third at 25, a third at 30 and a third at 35 and they basically have three chances of blowing some money. Sometimes we just pick an age that sounds right for your family. Other things you can do is incentivize the kids to get that degree, learn that trade, open that business through distributions when key things happen. This section of a living trust is completely customizable to you and your family based on what’s important to you and what you think your kids really need.
So if we want to support the kids in an ongoing fashion should something happen to us, getting the proper trust in place with those provisions is important ahead of time. Now, if you have any questions about how to prepare or plan or protect against periods of incapacity, or put a plan together should something happen to you always feel free to reach out to us. Give us a call. Send us an email, send us a text.We’re here and we’re always happy to answer any questions.
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