People generally want to give their money to their children or other loved ones. However, some have concerns about leaving their hard-earned assets in the wrong hands. Parents writing their will often have a hard decision when their child is known to abuse substances, be irresponsible with money, have gambling problems, etc.

A parent may not be comfortable giving them the money outright as they would be concerned about how the child would use the money. However, this doesn’t mean that the child should be disinherited or not named in the will.

What Needs to be Done

A parent who has these concerns can conduct certain estate measures to control the estate and the money that the child will inherit. What they need to do is indicate the situation with their child on the estate documents.

The parent can place some conditions on the child’s inheritance. This is called a testamentary trust, which pops up at death under certain circumstances. Testamentary trusts are usually done for minor children. There will be conditions that say that the child only gets the money when they reach a certain age.

A parent concerned about their adult child’s addiction issues can create a testamentary trust that sets forth conditions before the child can receive the money. Some examples are:

  • The beneficiary should be clean for a number of years at the discretion of the trustee
  • Testing requirements
  • Requiring a trusted person to watch the child and what they do with the money.

Disinheriting a child because of concerns about their lifestyle or personal issues is not recommended. There are better ways to control the money and protect the estate.