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Control from beyond the grave - a sort of WWYD

(32 Posts)
Homebird8 Tue 28-Jul-15 03:58:35

This father has carefully tied his daughters' inheritance to their life choices.

Article here

My instincts are screaming at them to walk away. What if they happen to want to do the things he stipulated. Wouldn't they be likely to feel manipulated? Wouldn't that taint the choice?

Or would you follow the plan, get the cash, and live the life?

Homebird8 Tue 28-Jul-15 04:04:46

Ok, the link didn't work. Here's the text:

A wealthy Manhattan landlord left $20 million to his two daughters — but they can collect only on his strict terms.
Daddy Dearest real estate millionaire Maurice Laboz, who died earlier this year, doled out early-bird bonuses to his girls in his will as long as they marry right, get good jobs and don’t even think about having kids out of wedlock.
The Laboz girls — Marlena, 21, and Victoria, 17 — are set to inherit $10 million apiece when they turn 35. But they can get their hands on some of the dough beforehand if they follow Daddy’s rules for the straight and narrow. For example:
Marlena will get $500,000 for tying the knot, but only if her husband signs a sworn statement promising to keep his hands off the cash.
She nets another $750,000 if she graduates “from an accredited university” and writes “100 words or less describing what she intends to do with the funds” — with the trustees appointed by her dad to oversee her money responsible for approving her essay.
Both daughters get a big incentive to earn decent salaries by 2020. Each young woman is guaranteed to receive an annual payout of three times the income listed on their personal federal tax return. In a not-so-subtle nod to the taxman, their checks will be cut every April 15.
If the daughters have kids and don’t work outside the house, the trustees will give them each 3 percent of the value of their trust every Jan. 1. There’s one catch: The money flows only for a “child born in wedlock.”
The sisters could earn the same amount being “a caregiver” to their mother, Ewa Laboz, 58, whom their father was in the middle of divorcing. She got nothing in the will and has indicated that she will contest it.
“It’s a way to control things from the grave,’’ said estate lawyer Jeffrey Barr, who is not involved in the case. “You don’t see a lot of it, but it happens. People do it because . . . they think it’s for the good of the children.’’

giraffesCantBrushTheirTeeth Tue 28-Jul-15 04:12:49

Bloody hell!

PatriarchalHandmaiden Tue 28-Jul-15 04:15:21

What a horrible.horrible man, if the daughters have any sensibilities they will say no to this. I can't actually believe that its legal to make those kind of stipulations in a will.

BastardGoDarkly Tue 28-Jul-15 04:20:33

Sheeeesh. His poor wife too confused

MarchelineWhatNot Tue 28-Jul-15 04:21:35

I guess it's his money to do what he likes with. Aside from that, I don't really see anything wrong with it. He wants his daughters to go to good universities, have a career and marry someone who is not after them for their money. Sure, he is bribing them, but don't we do that all the time with our kids anyway?

nooka Tue 28-Jul-15 04:30:15

My dad used to be a tax adviser to rich people, and I remember him saying that it was often a bit of a curse for the next generation to inherit large amounts of money. Some went on to do interesting things with their lives, secure in the knowledge that they didn't need to ever earn money in the mainstream. Others just drifted a bit aimlessly but a fair few lived hard and fast, and some came to rather sad end.

Essentially both daughters will get their share at 35. That's a bit older than usual (25 is quite common) but not at all unusual to keep such large amounts of money in trust until adulthood. The only stipulation that looks really iffy is the children within or outside marriage.

You can add all sorts of stipulations to trust funds (if you want).

Homebird8 Tue 28-Jul-15 05:15:10

What if the mother of the daughters, whom he was divorcing, contests the will as the article says, and the daughters don't fight it. Would the mother be able to give her daughter's the money with no strings attached should she be successful?

There may have been a divorce on the cards but he obviously felt that his wife should be looked after as there was money for the daughters in the case that they were the ones to do it. That might strengthen her case.

QueenOfNothing Tue 28-Jul-15 05:51:12

None of this sounds that unreasonable. Wanting your children to get married before having a baby, to get a good degree and a job. Surely these are reasonable things to wish for?

If he just gave them the money they'd be very unlikely to get a job - and long term that money could make them very very unhappy. This is what he's protecting them from.

I honestly think he's trying to protect them from the downside of being super rich.

nooka Tue 28-Jul-15 05:58:53

I suspect that it would be the executors or perhaps the trustees that the wife would be fighting not the daughters. Unless the will was completely overturned and everything given to the wife I would suspect that the trust rules woudl stand, just perhaps be less well funded.

Homebird8 Tue 28-Jul-15 08:01:23

Good to protect them from super riches. But why the super pocket money for being good girls? If they can be driven by it to marry, or have children, then maybe they might make a decision that isn't right for them. If they can't be driven by it then what is the point.

Surely they know what their father's views on marriage, pre-nups, legitimacy of children were. If they wanted to follow his wishes then they simply could without the payments in the will. I wonder whether he states whether the marriage has to be to a man or a woman or whether he left that choice to them?

ThoseAwfulCurtains Tue 28-Jul-15 08:08:25

Maybe he understood his DCs beteer than we do and thought inheriting wads of money would be very harmful to them. Maybe it was either this or leave it to the cats' home.

wonkylegs Tue 28-Jul-15 08:23:34

I have no problem with this - they always have the choice of walking away. Inheritance isn't a right, it's a gift that's nice to have but not essential. The terms are clear and upfront. I might not make them but it's his wish to do so and they aren't that weird or bizzare, it's only noteworthy really because of the sums of money involved.

ssd Tue 28-Jul-15 08:26:23

christ for that amount of money I'd do anything what he wants

ssd Tue 28-Jul-15 08:28:10

the poor mum got nothing though shock

nooka Tue 28-Jul-15 08:32:10

They are going to get all the money when they are older though, so they can choose to live their lives however they like secure in the knowledge that their future is assured. Hardly something to be complained about!

lalalonglegs Tue 28-Jul-15 08:50:40

It sounds as if he was really worried that they would become idle rich waiting for their inheritance to kick in and he is trying to guard against that. He is also concerned about cocklodger men - the baby out of wedlock is a bit old-fashioned but otherwise it seems as if he was an older father who knew he might not be around for his daughters for that long trying to do his best to make sure they aren't flakey/don't marry schmucks.

Homebird8 Tue 28-Jul-15 10:09:40

I wonder, if he'd lived to see them graduate from uni, marry, bring children into the world (in that order), and care for their mother it would have been accompanied by gifts? It might have, and then it would be just him doing what he'd planned all along.

Now I'm all worried that I see gifts as manipulation confused

TheCraicDealer Tue 28-Jul-15 10:42:51

I don't think it's that bad, he's just trying to protect them from a lifetime of lazing about with no direction or ambition, falling victim to a horrible bounder who just wants their cash, or simply spunking it all away. I've seen enough episodes of Poirot to see what people will do for money, it's not always a blessing.

He's in the process of divorcing the wife so presumably she's been sorted within the divorce settlement; if she's supporting this she's evidently quite happy with the arrangement and might even fully support his position. And getting a cash injection at 35 sounds pretty good; you're older, have had a bit of fun, maybe have a family, thinking about what's important/settling down.

ReallyTired Tue 28-Jul-15 10:59:29

The way to hell is paved with good intentions.

Sometimes bad luck can prevent people from getting a good degree from a good uni, getting married, having a well paid job or even having kids. If one of the girls is unlucky enough to have cancer then that could write off the chances of her ever having kids and possibly effect her earning and studying ablity.

Interesting question on what happens if one of them is gay? Is gay marriage legal in the US?

Floggingmolly Tue 28-Jul-15 11:04:37

Nothing wrong with that. He doesn't want them to become a pair of feckless losers surrounded by hangers on, because they know they need never earn a penny of their own.
It's what I'd do in the unlikely event I'd ever be in the same situation.

StayWithMe Tue 28-Jul-15 12:22:55

I've seen enough episodes of Poirot to see what people will do for money

grin

elementofsurprise Thu 30-Jul-15 15:03:57

What intrigues me is "Both daughters get a big incentive to earn decent salaries by 2020. Each young woman is guaranteed to receive an annual payout of three times the income listed on their personal federal tax return."

If someone offered me 3x my income every year it wouldn't be an incentive to make more money because even minimum wage would make that plenty for my lifestyle/circumstances. I'd be pleased I could prioritise things other than paid employment. It's like when I hear of huge high salaies and bonuses, I always think "You could work for a year/two and live of that for the rest of your life! Why are you still gong to work?!"

I think I may be from another planet. <looks wistfully up at the sky and back home where money means a differet thing>

BitterChocolate Thu 30-Jul-15 15:34:45

I think if I were one of the daughters I would use the money available to get a good third level education, because I would have reasonably expected the deceased father to have paid for that. Apart from that I would live my life however I want to, do a job I like, marry who I want, have children when and how I want and not worry too much about which actions will pay out and which won't.

I find it odd that he can leave his wife destitute, surely some of their assets gained during the marriage must be considered community property and therefore half owned by her, especially their home or any other property.

lalalonglegs Thu 30-Jul-15 19:36:23

Maybe the wife signed a pre-nup. He seems pretty keen on them.

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