Most people want the best for their families when they pass. They want to ensure that their families have the financial security and support they need. Other times, people have valuable property that needs to be maintained for years after a person’s death.

People may feel like they have no way to make sure this property is protected, however, legal options do exist. In some cases, creating a trust is a perfect way to ensure that a person’s hard earned personal property is put to good use and is protected for years to come. Trust planning is therefore an essential part of many Michigan residents’ estate plans.

For example, famous composers George and Ira Gershwin created trusts to protect their musical creations. The brothers are responsible for creating popular American masterpieces that have been cherished for generations. The trust now oversees the brothers’ intellectual property including their original musical scores, their compositional drafts and other invaluable material.

The trustees of the Arthur Gershwin Testamentary Trust and the Ira and Leonore Gershwin Trusts have recently made the decision to allow professors from the University of Michigan School of Music, Theater and Dance to study these timeless American treasures. Musical scholars will now be able to create electronic renditions of the famous musical pieces.

As this case shows, trusts and trustees can be very important in ensuring that a person’s legacy lives on for years to come. In this case, the trustees are the direct descendants of the original Gershwin brothers.

There are many different types of trusts that can serve many different purposes. Each have drawbacks and benefits. People should ensure that they understand how a trust can help them meet their estate planning goals. With the right trust planning, Michigan residents can ensure that their legacy is carried out for many years.

Source: The Ann Arbor News, “Gift to establish University of Michigan as authority on music of George and Ira Gershwin,” Sven Gustafson, Sept. 15, 2013

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