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Choosing professionals instead of family to manage a legacy

Some Nevada residents who are creating an estate plan may assume that because they want to leave assets for their children and spouse, they must also leave their family in control of their legacy. The problem with this approach is that family members may be ill-prepared to take over a business or other assets. The solution is to think about succession planning for a business as separate from providing for loved ones.

There may be employees and other professionals who are in a better position to step in and manage a legacy. Family members can still benefit from the legacy even if they are not in control of it.

The advantage of separating who controls the legacy from who benefits from it is that the people chosen in the succession plan can keep the legacy alive. In contrast, one man built a company his father had started into a huge enterprise. However, he eventually sold the business for more than $50 million. He did so because he did not want his children to inherit the company. There were already complex family dynamics at work, and he worried that inheriting the business would only worsen the situation. A better solution might have been to create a legacy plan that chose other people to manage the business and assets while still leaving his family with benefits.

This kind of estate planning may involve more complexities than simply creating a last will and testatment. One way a person might appoint others to manage assets while still making sure family benefits is with trusts. The assets in a trust can be managed by a professional while paying distributions to family members. A person can specify when those distributions are paid. For example, they could be linked to milestones such as a marriage or the completion of a certain level of education.

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