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Equal love need not equal identical trusts

Parents who have multiple children will vow that they love all of their children equally. While one may love children equally, it does not necessarily mean that they have to be provided for equally in one’s estate plan in Massachusetts. Just as children have different passions, likes and dislikes, they may also have different needs. Trusts are often established for children as part of a parent’s estate plan.

The different needs that can determine the makeup of a trust can be many. A child with special needs may require more assistance as he or she ages than a child who is healthy. A child who is struggling with the disease of addiction may need a trustee to help ensure that the money in the trust is used wisely. A budding artist may need more financial assistance than a practicing doctor or attorney.

Most people now understand the value of planning for the dispensation of one’s estate. It prevents strife and possible arguments among family members at a painful time. Providing for specific needs may be appreciated but should be explained once the decisions have been made. While providing for children according to their needs is a good enough reason for unequal consideration, failure to communicate the reasoning behind the decisions can cause discord if it is not known until a parent’s death.

Contemplating one’s mortality and the future of one’s children can appear an overwhelming task. This can be especially true when special needs or illness are part of the equation in Massachusetts. In order to establish trusts that will accomplish one’s final wishes, one may wish to consult with an experienced attorney who can help review the situation and advise on the options available.


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