You put in some of those safeguards where the trustee of the trust can suspend making distributions to that beneficiary. In the event, the trustee knows it’s going to be used for an inappropriate purpose. Doesn’t mean that the beneficiary can’t still benefit from the trust. For example, you’re worried about giving that beneficiary money cause he’s yours.
You’re going to take it and go buy drugs, alcohol, whatever, and they’ve got the problem. The trustee can pay. The person’s mortgage directly, they can make sure that the mortgage payment is going to get paid. So you have to have some of those. And then we even put in ours, the ability to obviously drug testing gets involved, but also we get counseling and have that counseling paid for.
They get a second chance. Although you have to be really careful about that. Drug has a huge recidivism, right? Those are some of the hard things that you have to craft around and identifying those is a really big part of it. And in fact, that’s what we always start out with saying is that people that successfully navigate this idea of transferring wealth with more purpose, and also, I think preserving family harmony, they routinely spend time knowing who they are.
And families don’t really do that very often, any longer. How often do you sit down and say, who are we as a family? What makes us unique? What are our core values? And that’s the other aspect to what this lifetime trust provides. It’s a way for you to pass on that personalization. I mentioned earlier that I’d come back to this.
This is where you, as a family could come in and say, these are the five core values. I don’t know, however many values you want to put in there that we really want our trust to be driven by. If you were to look at my trust document, you would see that there’s 35 pages, just giving directions to my trustees about the type of things that I would want to do, because I want to incentive my incentivize, my kids, and much more.
Then the static way that a trust is written, where it says the assets in that trust for the beneficiary are to be used for their health education, maintenance support. That’s not where I want it to end. I want my kids to be able to use it for entrepreneurial activities. I want to use it while they’re alive to help teach in some of these financial literacy ideas.
Right? Financial literacy is an extremely important thing for a parent to teach to a child because they don’t learn it anywhere else. They don’t learn it in school. You wouldn’t want them learning financial literacy in school. Last thing you want to do is take financial advice from a teacher joking, but the point being is that you, as the parent, whatever, however you define that, it really does have that responsibility for taking on that financial education to your kids.
How are you going to do that? Incentivizing them is just incredibly powerful. You’ll see things in people’s trusts, where they will provide for the family to be really thought of as a bank. And if a child wants something from the family bank, they don’t just get it given to them. They have to apply for a loan.
And if it’s for business, I don’t care if it’s a lemonade stand or like I have this family, actually, my son’s 15. Now he wants to start buying cars and, and, and reselling them and fixing them up. Right. Not in my experience, a real lucrative process, but he needs to learn his lessons and I’ll help him. And I’ll say, okay, look, I’ll loan you the money to help buy your first car, but I’ll tell you what, you’re going to come to the whole family, your brother, your sister, and I’ll ask your mom and your dad because you’re taking the family’s money and you are going to deliver us a, a business purpose, and I’ll help you.
I am teaching them how to write a business plan. And I want to understand what you plan on doing. You’ve done all the due diligence on costs, startups and all of these different kinds of things. I want him to start learning those things, even if he blows the thousand dollars or whatever that I might lend him.
He’s had a learning experience. Now, if he has an outstanding loan, he’s got to regularly come back. And deliver a state of the business address if you will, to the family. Cause that’s creating accountability, but it’s also teaching each other. There’s no better way to learn a topic or a subject than to have to teach it.
And my kids now are teaching each other about what they’re doing right. And what they’re doing wrong. In all of these activities, because I know my kids are going to make mistakes. You learn from your mistakes, but I’ll be really pissed off. If all of my kids make the exact same mistake. And if they can learn from each other, this is what I did.
This is what I did wrong. You’re creating family togetherness. You’re hopefully creating synergy for the kids working together. My kids are going to have to work together and how my plan is set up. Something happens to me. Nothing. It doesn’t go a third. Like I said, it all stays together and they’re going to have to work together on managing it under the principles that we’ve all got.