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  • Writer's pictureKara Verby

Testamentary Trusts


         It is highly recommended that where there are minor children that a testamentary trust be used for the benefit of such children.  A testamentary trust is a trust which does not come into being until the death of the decedent.  The provisions of the trust are incorporated within the will. 

               Without the use of a testamentary trust a minor child could receive a large sum of money outright with no restrictions on its use.  This may be unwise even for a child of the age of 25 who is not technically a minor. 


               The use of a testamentary trust allows the decedent to impose terms upon when the children will receive distributions from the trust outright.  Prior to receiving such outright distributions, the trustee will make distributions to or on behalf of the child for the child's "health, education, support and maintenance."  It is usually recommended that the children not receive outright distributions until they reach the age of 25 or 30.  For example, the trust may provide that the child receives one-third of the corpus or principal at age 25, one-half at age 30, and the remainder at age 35.  Alternatively, the trust provisions may provide that the child receives one-half of the corpus at age 30 and the remainder at age 35. 


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