The ongoing opioid epidemic shines an intensive new light on a related problem that, chances are, someone you know grapples with on a daily basis; addiction. Whether alcohol, drugs, or any manner of destructive behaviors, I find that many people have but do not want to talk about a family member who struggles with addiction. This behavior can cause a mountain of problems when dealing with loved ones who stand to gain an inheritance.
Although it is uncomfortable, there is good reason to discuss this family member with an attorney. I always encourage rigorous honesty and candor in client meetings regarding addiction because there are ways to make sure these individuals inherit in a protected way; from both themselves and an easily accessible lump-sum of money.
If you know someone who struggles with addiction, who is likely to inherit money in the future, it is a good idea to make sure that their inheritance is put in trust. Trusts are no longer meant solely for the extremely wealthy people that the phrase “trust fund baby”, once described.
Trusts are flexible documents that may be used to give money out in monthly distributions or to be distributed for specific purposes.
Before you go and download the latest “make your own trust” tool online, please come in and talk to us. We have experience with these situations and ideas that may be helpful to helping your family make the best decision to keep all your family members cared for and safe.
The National SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) helpline is 1-800-662-HELP. They are a 24/7/365 free and confidential resource that helps locate local treatment centers and provides information for those grappling with substance abuse.