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What can children buy with an educational trust?

You're thinking of setting up an educational trust for your grandchildren. You know that you can put age limits on it, preventing the children from using it until they turn 18. You also know that you can limit it so that the money can only go toward their education.

What exactly does that mean? How can they use the money you leave for them? They have to follow the rules that you set up for the trust, and those are up to you.

For instance, the trust can typically be applied to tuition payments for a traditional college or university, a graduate school program, a program that grants the participants a certificate, a trade school or a vocational school. It can also go to any other educational program the child has to pay for.

However, if you have a specific path in mind, you can dedicate the trust to that end goal. For instance, perhaps you do not think trade schools are as valuable as four-year universities, so you could add that stipulation to the trust.

As far as specific expenses are concerned, the trust can go beyond mere tuition payments. It can also be used for additional college fees like the cost of books, school supplies and perhaps room and board or other living expenses. These are all costs that could otherwise stand in the way of someone's education.

If you want to make sure that your money is used as intended, make sure you know all of the legal options you have when setting up an educational trust. An experienced San Diego estate planning attorney can provide valuable guidance.

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