What is a Child Protection Trust?
Updated: Jan 21
“The probate court has exclusive jurisdiction to construe the (testamentary) trust and to direct, control, supervise and review the administration of the trust by the testamentary trustee. The trustee is accountable to the Court, as well as the trust beneficiaries and accountings of receipts and distributions are filed with the Court.” —Local Probate Court Website
After you are gone, do you want the people left to love and care for your children to be required to ask permission to spend your money on your kids?
If you are like most parents, the answer is NO! You want your children to be loved and cared for by nurturing guardians, who can use what you have left to care for them without the hassles and burdens created by probate court interference.
This is a problem for most parents’ planning. The solution is a Child Protection Trust.
Most parents have a Will that establishes a trust upon the death of both parents. The problem is that whenever a trust is established through a Will, the probate court supervises the trust and the trustee, manages the property, and spending (see above quote). This means that at least every year the trustee must provide a budget for the next year to the probate court for approval. If more money needs to be spent (a surprise opportunity to go to a camp or an invitation to join a travel sports team) the trustee must get court approval before spending the money. In addition, every year the trustee must file an accounting that documents (with receipts) every penny that was spent.
A Child Protection Trust plan eliminates court involvement for the handling of assets you leave for your children. A Child Protection Trust allows your assets to be managed by the trusted person (the Trustee) you pick, not the probate court. Because your assets are handled in a trust that is not established by your Will, the trust does not require probate court involvement. This means that your trustee manages the assets you leave (house, stocks, money) without having to get a judge’s permission.