When minors receive an inheritance, it is usually managed through an expensive court supervised guardianship proceeding. Upon the minor turning 18, the proceeding terminates and the child receives the remainder of the inheritance.
How do we avoid guardianships and prevent our children from receiving windfalls at 18? The answer is: Sprinkling Trusts. If a living trust is established, we can avoid a court supervised guardianship and hold the assets in the trust well beyond the child's 18th birthday by adding a sprinkling trust to the trust.
In my trusts for the children, we usually hold the majority of the inheritance in the trust until the child turns 30. In the meantime, the successor trustee can sprinkle money out to the children for their health, education, maintenance and support.
It is common to establish a sprinkling trust inside probate avoidance trusts so that if the inevitable occurs early, the young beneficiaries do not receive a windfall. Most of my clients believe that a windfall at 18 stifle's motivation and causes unintended consequences. I don't disagree.