Trust and Estates Newsletters
A very common and valuable provision seen in most family trusts and invariably in dynasty trusts is the spray or sprinkle provision. Where there is more than one beneficiary, this provision allows the trustee to distribute (spray) the income and/or principal among the beneficiaries in varying proportions as the trustee feels appropriate, having in mind their individual needs and circumstances from time to time. In other words, the trustee need not make equal distributions among the beneficiaries, but instead can vary the distributions according to their particular needs, which undoubtedly is exactly what the grantors would do were they alive.
When a person dies intestate (without making and leaving a will), each state provides a default plan (usually known as the statute of descent and distribution) under which his or her net estate is disposed. When a person dies intestate, there is no changing the default plan. The default plan's sequences for determining who inherits and how much can not be changed. This article discusses the disadvantages of descent and distribution related to that inability to change who inherits and how much.
Your attorney-in-fact only has the financial authority you grant him in the document creating a durable power of attorney for finances.
In order to make a will, a person must intend to make a will. A person must have what is known as testamentary intent. The adjective 'testamentary' means related to a will, and is a derivative of the word 'testament'--the Latin word for will. The Latin phrase for testamentary intent is animus testandi, "the intention to make a testament."
Trusts are commonly classifed in two ways. The first way is by the duties of the trustee. The second way is by the intent, if any, of the settlor to create a trust. This article discusses generally these two ways of classifying a trust.