Four issues you can resolve with a family trust, but not in your Will.

Four issues you can resolve with a family trust, but not in your Will.

Wills and Trusts are both estate planning tools. However, there are distinct advantages to using a Trust over a Will. Here are five ways in which a Trust is better than a Will to pass your estate to your beneficiaries.

1. A Trust can be used to potentially save Estate Duty – a Will cannot. Estate administration is the process of changing ownership of assets to beneficiaries when someone passes away. Finalising a deceased estate, takes a protracted period. Living costs and expenses of dependants cannot be paid during this period as the estate is frozen. A Family Trust is an excellent estate administration tool because assets that are owned in the name of a Trust are immediately accessible to the Trust's beneficiaries.

2. A Trust can provide Asset Protection for the inheritance you leave to Beneficiaries – a Will cannot. Many people worry that the inheritance they leave to their children will be lost to their children's creditors such as a divorcing spouse, unpaid credit card bills, a bankruptcy, a business loss, or a lawsuit. Sadly, this is often the case when assets are distributed to beneficiaries via a Will. A Trust allows the founder to safeguard an inheritance from the reach of the beneficiaries' creditors by keeping the assets out of the name of the beneficiary.

Ownership of the assets remains in the Trust. The beneficiary will have access to the assets per the directions in the Trust Deed. By leaving assets to your heirs via a Trust rather than outright via your Will, you can ensure that the assets you worked so hard for will be available to your children and future generations.

3. Leaving assets to a person with disabilities in a Trust is the best way to ensure the preservation of capital and benefits to pay for expenses and necessary living costs

4. A Trust can Administer Assets for Minor Beneficiaries without Court Intervention – a Will cannot. Leaving money directly to a minor creates an administrative nightmare because the law provides that a minor does not have the legal capacity to receive assets. These funds must be paid to the Guardians Fund until the child reaches the age of 18. This means costs and long delays in accessing funds for your children when they need it most. It also means that when the minor turns 18, he or she will be entitled to receive all of those assets and will be free to do with them as he or she wishes.

Creating a Trust to receive assets passing to a minor, or even to a young adult beneficiary, is the best way to ensure that the court is not involved in the process, that the person you want to manage assets for the beneficiary is able to do so, and that the beneficiary can use the assets only for purposes you decide are important and/or at ages that you dictate.

If you want to know more about whether a Trust is right for your situation, contact Louwrens Koen Attorneys to discuss your goals.

This article is not intended to provide legal advice or create or imply an attorney-client relationship. No information contained herein is a substitute for a personal consultation with an attorney. For more information visit or E-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 087 0010 733



Louwrens Koen Attorneys

Louwrens Koen Attorneys, Conveyancers and Notaries have a modern outlook on life and have modern solutions for today's problems and needs without compromising on traditional values. Louwrens Koen was admitted as an Attorney in 1995. He is also an admitted Conveyancer, Notary Public and University Guest Lecturer.