The knowledge that trillions of dollars will be conveyed from the first of the baby boomer generation to their heirs within the next decade is prompting financial planners to consider what kind of conditions their clients may want the heirs to meet before they can lay claim to an inheritance.
A Wealth and Values survey, conducted recently by PNC Wealth Management, a division of PNC Financial Services Group, based in Pittsburgh, Pa., reveals that 62% of high-net-worth individuals who have estate plans feel the next generation should take responsibility for creating its own wealth. However, only 30% have included stipulations in their wills or trusts requiring heirs to met specific goals before becoming entitled to their inheritance.
"We confine ourselves to making suggestions, but we want to help promote those behaviors that are important to our clients," says Marie L. Tormey, Northern New Jersey Market Trust Director for PNC Wealth Management. "So it is important for us to have these conversations with clients. We can bring objectivity to what can be a difficult family decision."
The overwhelming majority (77%) of those clients who have attached stipulations to their wills and trusts have set certain education requirements for the recipients to meet, the survey shows. The next most popular stipulations require that the inherited money be spent only for basic needs such as housing, that a certain amount be retained for the grandchildren or that the money by used for career expenses.
Most of those surveyed (74%) plan to leave their money to their children, while less than a third (30%) plan to leave assets to charity. The younger the giver, the more likely that conditions will be included in the will or trust, according to the survey, which queried people with at least $500,000 of investable income if employed, or at least $1 million in investable income if retired.