Will trusts have grown in popularity in recent years as estates increase in value and family networks grow more complex.
But what is a Will trust – and how can it help blended families?
In this blog, we’re going to explore the benefits of using a Will Trust in your estate planning to support your loved ones after you’re gone.
What is a blended family?
Blended families – also known as stepfamilies – are households that include children from different relationships. For example, your new partner may move into your home with her biological children, or you may move into your partner’s home with your biological children.
There is no set definition of a blended family, so everyone’s circumstances will be different.
What is a Will trust?
Will trusts are written into your Last Will and Testament to give you more control over who will benefit from your estate.
You can select what assets will be held in the trust, the beneficiaries, and who will have control over the management of the trust – known as trustees.
The beneficiaries can include any number of people, but are usually named individuals, a class of people (such as grandchildren and descendants, including people who haven’t been born yet), a charity, or an organisation.
How can a Will trust help blended families?
A Will trust gives you an extra layer of control over your estate that is difficult to write into a standard Will.
For instance, you could use a Will trust to ensure that your estate is used to fund the education of your children or grandchildren or the healthcare of vulnerable relatives.
It’s this level of control that makes Will trusts especially useful for blended families.
Let’s say, for example, that you and your new spouse live together in your property with your biological children from a previous marriage. You could use a ‘life interest trust’ to provide income or property for your new spouse during their lifetime but ensure that your estate is passed down to your children after your partner’s death (or remarriage).
Will trusts can help families overcome complex financial and emotional situations on your death. They provide clarity, direction and financial security, helping to avoid family conflict further down the line.
For help and advice with related matters, please get in touch with our estate planning team today.
Senior Probate Executive – Wills, Probate & Older Client Services
I have worked for Mander Hadley for 17 years and specialise in Wills, trusts, tax, probate and the administration of estates.
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