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Updating Will & Trust: how many contingencies have you named?
Old 09-15-2015, 10:51 AM   #1
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Updating Will & Trust: how many contingencies have you named?

DW and I established a Will and Trust many years ago when the boys were young.

Now they will both be 'of age' this year and we have other family related decisions to update.

So we have been thinking our Will & Trust need to be updated.

Guardians will not be needed, but Executor and Trustees need to be changed along with a review of our POA and Health Directives.

My question is, how many contingencies do you have in your Will & Trust?

We will use the typical, if I die first, DW is Executor and Trustee, and if she dies first then me.

But after that, things get more complicated. Years ago, my DF/DM were named as Executor and Trustees if both DW and I passed as my DF was really sharp with all things financial. But time has passed and well....time to reconsider.
Same on DW's side of the family - her parents are getting older and may not want to be named for roles (or can't).

So, what about a 3rd party such as an attorney or company that specializes in Trust management? Anyone have good experiences to share?
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Old 09-15-2015, 01:16 PM   #2
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After interviewing trust managers at several banks I wouldn't go that route.
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Old 09-15-2015, 01:26 PM   #3
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Well, in our particular situation we are at that 'odd phase' where our parents are getting on, but the kids are barely 18.


Just thought I'd get a feel on what folks here have done for naming their executors and trustees.
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Old 09-15-2015, 01:28 PM   #4
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My question is, how many contingencies do you have in your Will & Trust?
We do not have a trust, just simple wills. If I die first, DW is Executor, and if she dies first then me. If both die, our oldest son is executor, if he cannot/will not, then it will go to another child of ours. That's as far as our wills specify. I would feel too uncomfortable to choose a 3rd party unless that person was a close friend that I really felt I could trust and someone that gained zero benefit from the will / trust and had no close ties to one of those folks that did benefit from my will.
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Old 09-15-2015, 02:18 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by BBQ-Nut View Post
Well, in our particular situation we are at that 'odd phase' where our parents are getting on, but the kids are barely 18.

Just thought I'd get a feel on what folks here have done for naming their executors and trustees.
We are in a similar situation. We named one of DH's sisters as the trustee for our now 22 year old daughter, should we both die before she's 25 (or maybe 30, I can't remember what we setup years ago but now that she's 22, I'm definitely thinking 30 is better).

This sister is an attorney who lives in a major city. We know our other siblings would all do their best if called upon, but this one has more connections to the types of resources that would be needed to handle a $3.5M estate/trust and we figured it would be easier for her than for some of the others.
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Old 09-15-2015, 02:39 PM   #6
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We just changed ours from DF to DD last year - she's now 27 and very responsible so she should be able to handle it.
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Old 09-15-2015, 02:48 PM   #7
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We have no kids so we named Nieces/Nephews as the executors..................
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Old 09-15-2015, 06:55 PM   #8
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My kids are the beneficiaries but my sister is the executor. We have backups of my aunt and a grown nephew.
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Old 09-15-2015, 08:33 PM   #9
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Went through the whole complex thing when the kids were minors. One relative to be guardian, with three backup contingencies. A different relative to be trustee of the trust for minors, with three backup contingencies. Different skill sets, and a bit of check and balance seemed like a good idea at the time.

Now I'm ready to update and just leave everything to the kids (per stirpes) even though they are only young adults. I'm hoping to live long enough that they will be able to manage an unexpected windfall by the time I pass. They seems fairly sensible about money so far. I'd rather them have it and live their lives, and possibly have a chance to make a few minor mistakes, than lose high fees every year for a trust that I control from the grave.
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Old 09-15-2015, 09:05 PM   #10
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Update the trust early next year, and will probably have two contingencies at that time.
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Old 09-15-2015, 10:53 PM   #11
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Over the years, there are many life events that require wills and trusts to be rewritten to correspond with changing times.

Our daughter is 27 years old and a single mother of two young children. She is somewhat irresponsible and doesn't have the judgement to handle our estate. We're setting up a Special Needs Trust where she can draw funds to pay for property taxes, healthcare insurance and other minor expenses. Otherwise, she cannot get hold of the principal balance or sell real estate. And no creditors can get a judgement against her and come after our remaining estate or her home that'll be held in trust.

In our case, it's our grandchildren we're having to protect.

I fortunately have a 42 year old nephew that's very capable, and will have full powers to make decisions for our daughter and her family.
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Old 09-15-2015, 11:07 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by growing_older View Post
Went through the whole complex thing when the kids were minors. One relative to be guardian, with three backup contingencies. A different relative to be trustee of the trust for minors, with three backup contingencies. Different skill sets, and a bit of check and balance seemed like a good idea at the time.

Now I'm ready to update and just leave everything to the kids (per stirpes) even though they are only young adults. I'm hoping to live long enough that they will be able to manage an unexpected windfall by the time I pass. They seems fairly sensible about money so far. I'd rather them have it and live their lives, and possibly have a chance to make a few minor mistakes, than lose high fees every year for a trust that I control from the grave.
+1
Originally, we were each other's beneficiaries and executors. If we went together one DB&SIL got the kids and another DB was executor and trustee.
Recently updated (when we told the kids, DD said "You mean now that I'm 35, I don't have to live with SIL, DB deceased, when you die") with each other still as main beneficiaries and executors but kids as alternate executors, although kids get a good chunk when each of us goes. If a kid goes before us his/her share goes to his/her kids with their spouse as trustee until age of majority.
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Old 09-16-2015, 08:00 AM   #13
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I have one contingency if my first choice for executor can't do it.
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Old 09-18-2015, 10:17 AM   #14
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We chose my sister's husband as executor and administrator of our estate. Their kids are the beneficiaries, along w my brother's kids, so we thought he'd be a good choice. Sensible and frugal guy, and my sister didn't seem miffed we chose him and not her.
We do have an alternate, an old friend who could do in a pinch.
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