Maturity Markers: A New Paradigm for Trust Distribution Models and Gifting Strategies  

Mitchell Baris, Clinical Psychologist

Carla Garrity, Child Psychologist

Carol Warnick, Estate Planning Attorney

John Warnick, Estate Planning Attorney

Professionals advising families in wealth transfer lack guidelines for determining if young adult heirs will manage family wealth and/or take on positions of responsibility in family businesses effectively or will falter. Advisors look to maturity to determine readiness for transfer of wealth and responsibility but professionals know well that chronological age alone does not determine maturity as it needs to be defined to determine readiness to assume responsibility in stewardship of family wealth or family business. This article will define five markers of maturity that herald the ability to manage responsibly and also provide a benchmark of maturity for each of the five dimensions. Using these five dimensions, family advisors can fine tune their insights and judgments as to the readiness of an individual heir to assume a responsible position in stewardship of the family wealth and business. 

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