It’s no surprise that parents of young families often don’t have any estate plan in place. It’s a busy time of life. Every day is filled with urgent requests for your attention. Still, having a plan doesn’t need to be hard or expensive.

There are a few questions young parents can consider before dismissing the idea of having an estate plan:

  1. Who will care for your children?
  2. Do you have life insurance?
  3. Do you have a trust?
  4. Who will manage the assets for your family?
  5. Who make health and financial decisions if you are seriously injured?

Northwestern Mutual provides helpful information on each of these questions. You can learn more here: Estate Planning for Young Families: 5 Questions Parents Need to Answer.

Some of those questions are obvious, but might say, “why do I need a trust?” Northwestern Mutual explains:

If you think that your child’s guardian would automatically be able to use inheritance money to care for your children then you’d likely be wrong. By default, the court — not the guardian — will control the inheritance before the child reaches the legal age of 18 or 21. If you’d like to avoid any confusion as to what your children inherit and when, a trust may be a good choice for you. Within a trust you can decide who will manage the money and decide when the children will receive trust assets and for what purposes.

In fact, a majority of our young family clients choose to set up a trust when they understand all the benefits a trust provides. A trust protects assets, avoids probate in court, and provides a long-term plan for the needs of children.

This article was written by attorney Aaron Hall.