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Friday, August 1, 2014

Philip Seymour Hoffman and five big myths about trusts

Recently I posted an article about Sting, the British rocker who says that he won't be leaving his children much of an inheritance. He and other rich celebrities have said that they fear inheriting a significant amount of money will cause their children to grow up as trust fund kids - rich kids without incentive or ambition. In other words, they don't want to raise a bunch of spoiled brats who contribute nothing to the world. Sting and his partner are spending all their money instead.

Is this a valid position? Perhaps it depends on the children and on the parents. Philip Seymour Hoffman, an actor whom I greatly admired, took the decision not to set up trust funds for his kids even further. He did basically no planning for his children at all. He left his vast fortune to his girlfriend, trusting that she'd do the heavy lifting when it came to the kids. I have also posted previously about Mr. Hoffman's estate.

While we ordinary folks may not have the millions that famous actors and musicians have, our issues are the same. We want to deal with what we have in the most effective way we can, doing the best for those left behind, reducing tax, and making our wishes known.

I have just read a great article from by Danielle and Andy Mayoras that takes a closer look at Mr. Hoffman's estate planning, or lack thereof. The article is about trusts, how they could have helped Mr. Hoffman, and how they might help you. Click here to read it. The article addresses the question of whether children with trust funds will grow up to be spoiled brats, as well as other excellent points.

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