Make an estate plan to avoid dispute after you’re gone


    Often times, upon the death of the man of the house, the dependants are thrown into disputes regarding who inherits what, especially if the dead man left substantial inheritance behind. We are all familiar with the issues that often arise upon death, with members of the family pitched against one another.

    This is often resolved by the courts, sometimes after a prolonged litigation that would have been a drain on the time, energy and resources of everyone involved. This can be avoided with an estate plan which lets the individual decide how his or her assets are handled or distributed after his demise.

    To minimise disputes arising from the failure to plan for uncertainties in life, especially death, you should consider estate planning as imperative to peaceful and orderly transfer of assets. Though people generally shy away from the issue of death, this certainty is a fundamental part of life that should be recognised and planned for.

    Estate planning is not targeted at only wealthy people, but something that everyone needs, regardless of their financial clout or how simple or complex their family affairs may be. Options available to make provisions for loved ones include writing a Will, instituting a Living Trust, and Gifting of assets (inter vivos), all of which facilitates orderly acquisition and transfer of assets. Chief Executive of Stanbic IBTC Trustees Limited, Mrs. Binta Max-Gbinije, said the company has been organising and will continue to organise awareness forums through which the public and stakeholders will gain valuable insight on trusteeship services and how they can harness such services to their benefit.

    The company, she said, has shareholders’ funds in excess of the statutory N300 million, and was incorporated six years ago to provide institutional trust and estate planning/administration services to facilitate inter-generational wealth transfer and protect the interest of parties/investors in a transaction.

    The company has launched a number of products in furtherance of its mission to provide trusteeship services in Nigeria. Among them is the Stanbic IBTC Educational Trust (SET), an educational trust product that assists parents and guardians to provide sound education for their children and wards.

    The product offers numerous long-term benefits which assure beneficiaries of a brighter future through education and training as it will seek to ensure that the education of children is not truncated due to lack of financing, and make a reality the desire of parents or guardians to fulfill their dreams of giving their children or wards the kind of education they desire or that the children/wards deserve for a step in the right direction for a sound footing in life.

    Through the service, parents have an opportunity to make contributions towards funding the education of their children–whether it is primary, secondary, tertiary or even post-graduate education. Coming from Stanbic IBTC, which has a stated goal of serving the individual from cradle through generations to grave, the Stanbic IBTC Educational Trust was conceptualised in recognition of the strategic role education plays in laying a solid foundation for growing future leaders, stated Max-Gbinije, adding that education is essential for both individual accomplishment and socio-economic development.

    As a member of the 153 year-old Standard Bank Group, Stanbic IBTC Trustees Limited (SITL) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Stanbic IBTC Holdings Plc and is part of a fiduciary team that has administered trusts for over 35 years.

    Max-Gbinije said Stanbic IBTC Trustees Limited therefore enjoys a vast pool of expertise, experience and resources to offer first-in-class services and is also able to leverage the intellectual capital and international experience of Standard Bank’s multi-jurisdictional fiduciary team. Stanbic IBTC Holdings is a member of Standard Bank Group, a full service financial services group with a clear focus on three main business pillars – corporate and investment banking, personal and business banking and wealth management.