Why Create a Trust for your Minor Children?
June 27, 2017 Posted by Richard Chamberlain

You have a minor child or children, and you want to make an estate plan. Why is it important to create a trust for them? Go through this quick exercise to answer this question based on your own circumstances.

  1. Write the total gross value of your assets (approximate)
  2. Write the total amount of your life insurance
  3. Add lines 1 and 2 (this is your total gross estate)
  4. Write the total of your debt (mortgage, credit cards, student loans, etc.)
  5. Subtract line 4 from line 3 (this is your total net estate)
  6. How many children do you have?
  7. Divide line 5 by line 6 (this is the total estate per child)

Are you comfortable with the possibility that if you passed away, your children could receive this amount (approximately) when they turn 18, knowing they can do ANYTHING they want with the money?

If “Yes“: Then a Will might be an appropriate plan for you.

If “No“: Then you need an estate plan that includes a trust to manage the assets for your children until they are older and more mature. This type of plan will allow you to protect your children and the assets they will receive.

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About the author
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Richard Chamberlain Richard M. Chamberlain is the founder and principal attorney of the Chamberlain Law Group, Ltd. and is a member of the Ohio State Bar Association section on Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law. He has an undergraduate degree in Economics, magna cum laude, from Tulane University (1989) and received his law degree from Florida State University (1992), where he was a member of the Law Review. Richard was born in Port Sulfur, Louisiana (about an hour south of New Orleans – yes, there is land an hour south of New Orleans) in 1967. When he was 3, his family moved to Baton Rouge, where they lived until he was in college at Tulane University in New Orleans. After graduating from Tulane, Richard attended The Florida State University College of Law in Tallahassee, Florida, where he earned his law degree in 1992. While practicing law in Tampa, Florida, Richard met a beautiful girl named Kelly Sancraint (a transplant originally from Toledo, Ohio). They were soon married, and as they began their family, they made the decision in 1998 to move back to the Toledo area to be near family. Richard founded his own law practice (“The Law Office of Richard M. Chamberlain, Ltd.”) in Perrysburg, Ohio in 2007, focusing on the practice areas of estate planning and estate administration, business formation and planning, elder law and real estate law. In 2012, with the addition of his first associate attorney, the name of the firm was changed to “Chamberlain Law Group, Ltd.” Richard is a member of WealthCounsel, a cooperative alliance of nationally recognized estate planning attorney members from across the country. as well as being a member of The Rotary Club of Perrysburg and the Perrysburg Chamber of Commerce. Richard also serves on the Board of the Perrysburg Schools Foundation, and he serves in several ministries at CedarCreek Church. Richard and Kelly have 4 daughters, 1 son-in-law, and 1 granddaughter, who keep them both very busy with their varied interests.