I Want To Make Sure That My Grandchildren Receive My Real Estate. Is It Possible To Leave Real Estate To Minor Children In Oklahoma?
While it is possible to leave real estate to minor children in Oklahoma, it is often not wise to do so. However, if you do want to leave real estate to minor children, there are some methods that can help you achieve your goal. First, let’s discuss why it might not be sensible to leave real estate to minor children. The first problem is that minor children are not able to sign any documents related to real estate. They cannot sign a contract. They cannot even enter into a contract to get the property mowed and maintained. They cannot sue someone for trespassing. Furthermore, most banks will not allow minor children to sign a check to pay the taxes. When you combine all of these issues together, it is unlikely that a reasonable person will directly leave real estate in the name of juveniles.
With that said, I understand and appreciate the desire a person has to take care of their grandchildren. There are a couple of ways that it can be done with this particular goal in mind. First, consider a revocable trust. You can appoint trustees you believe will receive the property and honorably take care of it for the benefit of your grandchildren until they reach an appropriate age that allows them to take legal title and actual control of the real estate. You can also include some money in the revocable trust to pay for taxes, insurance, and maintenance expenses. You will also be able to specify a successor trustee in case the first trustee becomes unable to serve.
Perhaps a better option would be an irrevocable trust that is also a grantor trust for the purpose of leaving real estate to your grandchildren. Using such a trust, you can put properties outside the availability and reach of creditors and nursing home expenses. You can set up your trust to take care of your grandchildren while having confidence that your properties will not be lost, even if you suffer a terrible health setback and spend years in long-term care. For many grandparents, this is extremely important, and I definitely support you in that thought.
In conclusion, it is generally not a good idea to put deeds in the name of any child. However, you can care for your grandchildren by using a trust to achieve that goal.
Are There Any Tips For Someone Who Is Creating A Trust For Multiple Children?
There are some essential tips that should be considered when creating a trust for multiple children. First, make a detailed list of specific items that you think your children would like to receive, then specify the item that goes to each child. It is most certain that your children will have differing opinions and expectations. After you pass away, they will be hurting emotionally. As a result, they will more than likely snip at one another. You can minimize this issue by setting some boundaries and rules in the distribution of your estate. Part of that should be a specific plan geared towards who receives what. With all of that in mind, I strongly discourage the gifting of specific sums of money in your estate plan. For instance, just because $5,000 seems to be the right number to give to Cousin Bob today, that is not a reliable way to predict whether that amount will be appropriate 10 years from now. That $5,000 may be the cost of a new car or a ham sandwich. Due to the changes in inflation and the economy, we cannot reliably predict how far money will go. We can, however, predict that 5% will be 5%. Therefore, I strongly encourage the use of percentages in estate plans over specific dollar amounts.
My next tip is to get a list of people you trust to serve as trustee over your trust or estate. The person who you believe will be there for you tomorrow may not be there for you five or 15 years from now. As such, we need backup plans.
You will need backup plans for your gifts as well. People often have incorrect expectations and beliefs concerning the gifts they describe in their trust documents. For example, a mother may not know that the gift she is describing for the benefit of her son, Bill, could end up going to his deadbeat son in the penitentiary if Bill passes away untimely. Likewise, a mother may not know that the gift she makes for her best friend, Betty, will not go to Betty’s children if Betty passes away before the mother does. It is important to be careful with how gifts are written in your backup plan, particularly if the intended beneficiary does not survive. These are issues you should discuss in detail with your attorney.
For more information on Leaving Real Estate To Grandchildren In OK, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (405) 754-4166 today.
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