What Happens to My Assets if None of the Beneficiaries Named in My Living Trust Survive Me?

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Your living trust should include an “ultimate distribution” provision that addresses the unlikely scenario that all of your beneficiaries—typically your spouse, children or grandchildren—do not survive you. What is sometimes referred to as a the “family disaster” provision might specify that your assets would pass to designated “contingent” beneficiaries such as your siblings, nieces or nephews, charities, friends, or some combination of these people or entities. Or, the ultimate distribution provision might simply provide that your assets would be distributed to your “intestate” heirs—that is, those persons who would receive your assets under the laws of your state had you died without a plan.