How should I protect myself in a trust?

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How should I protect myself in a trust?

I have been married to a man for 20 years now. When we married he had 4 children, 9-14. They are grown now and we have 6 grandchildren. He wants me to sign a trust giving all children 10% each and myself 60%. He states it is for tax purposes. There is approximately 2 M in monies, property and stocks, etc. When he is gone I am thinking they will no longer be around and I am OK with that. They are in their 30’s now and I am 50.

Asked on October 3, 2011 under Estate Planning, Ohio

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Protect yourself by bringing the trust agreement to an attorney to review on your behalf. I can understand - and I think that you can too - that your husbandwishes to protect everyone that he loves: you and the children.  And that the best way that he can do that is to create a trust to make sure that everyone is protected.  But you should never sign anything unless someone explains what impact that document has under the law in your state.  If everything is jointly held then it passes to you upon his death.  Same for you to him.  What he is afraid of is that you will disinherit the kids.  So he want to provide for them.  As for their not being around when he is gone, maybe, maybe not. Hopefully you have forged enough of a bond over 20 years that it will surpass a blood relationship.  Good luck. 


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