More than 30% of Americans who received an inheritance had negative savings within 2 years – meaning they spent or lost all of it.
According to an Ohio State University researcher (anyone who knows me knows how painful it is for me to give credit for anything to someone from Ohio State – GO BLUE!) Americans will transfer approximately $4 trillion in wealth by 2022, which means nearly $2 trillion of it will be essentially wasted. Newfound wealth seems to be less important than hard-earned cash.
How do you prevent your beneficiaries from wasting the assets you’ve worked your life for? Trust-based planning is the most effective way to put controls on the distribution of your assets. It’s much more tempting for someone who receives a lump-sum distribution to blow it. If that same person received small incrimental distributions over time, it’s more likely that they’re use it as extra income or for something important. Inheritance can be like winning the lottery – and you’ve surely seen plently of examples of how large sums of lottery winnings can ruin someone’s life.
Do what’s right for your estate and your beneficiaries – don’t use lump-sum distributions!