Using a Charitable Trust to Meet Your Family Needs

The Story of Maurice

Sandy Calbreath, Trust Officer

As an astute businessman, Maurice enjoyed actively managing his investment portfolio and was not interested in relinquishing management of his assets during his lifetime. His primary concerns were:

  • management of his assets after his lifetime,
  • providing the maximum benefit from his estate to his disabled daughter and
  • leaving a legacy to the community after his daughter’s needs had  been met.

As part of a carefully crafted estate plan, Maurice established a charitable trust through his will with a portion of his assets, naming his daughter Catherine as the income beneficiary for her lifetime. The trust helped maximize her inheritance by:

  • removing assets from Maurice’s estate, thus reducing his federal estate  tax liability
  • using the trust to coordinate estate planning with other trusts in his estate
  • protecting the assets by providing for professional management

After his daughter’s lifetime, the remainder of the trust will be distributed to several local and national charities. Citing the way Maurice faithfully cared for his ailing wife and daughter and looked out for the widows in the neighborhood, Catherine noted “it was so like Dad to find a way to leave something to the community he loved.”

Describing herself as a novice at financial affairs, Catherine says she feels “very secure” with the arrangements made by her father and is “grateful to have the load off her mind” in respect to managing her assets.

Maurice’s story demonstrates how a charitable trust established through a will can be used effectively to meet individual needs first and charitable goals later, after individual and family obligations have been satisfied. As in the case of the eastern Washington farmer, with a charitable remainder trust, charity begins at home.

Print Date:  Spring 2002