Ashton Kutcher: My kids are not getting trust funds, I’ll give my money to charity

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Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis only rarely discuss their children and don’t give much information. Mila said last year that they didn’t want to raise a-holes. I guess that’s their parenting talking point, which isn’t a bad one. When Ashton was on Dax Shepard’s Armchair Expert podcast, he announced that his children, Wyatt, three and Dmitri, one, will not be receiving trust funds – to ensure they don’t become a-holes, I assume.

Ashton Kutcher recently opened up about how he and Mila Kunisare raising their two children, daughter Wyatt and son Dimitri. The actor was a guest on pal Dax Shepard’s Armchair Expert podcast and talked about teaching their kids to be “resourceful” and shared that they won’t be setting up a trust fund for them.

“…my kids are not getting like big…I’m not setting up a trust for them, we’ll end up giving our money away to charity and to various things,” Kutcher said. “And so if my kids want to start a business and they have a good business plan, I’ll invest in it but they’re not getting trusts. So hopefully they’ll be motivated to have what they had or some version of what they had.”


[From E!
via Dlisted]

Obviously, Ashton and Mila have money and live accordingly. By extension, the kids are enjoying the same lifestyle and will benefit from the people who run in their circles. I’m impressed with Ashton’s ideas about investing in his kids’ business plans if he felt they held merit. Not only do the kids have to earn it in a sense, if their business venture works out, Ashton’s investment will be returned to him. Ashton, as we know, is a very savvy investor. I’m sure his kids would get a slightly larger margin for error, but not much. This concept acknowledges that Wyatt and Dmitri will have advantages other kids don’t, but won’t have things handed to them.

Gordon Ramsey recently said something similar. Bill Gates and Warren Buffet both said they’re not leaving it all to the kids (to be fair, a ‘small portion’ of either of their fortunes is still more money than most of us ever see in a lifetime). Sting
plans on spending his cash and not leaving it to his kids.

While their children will surely have other advantages and may inherit their assets anyway, I like this approach. I am not opposed to inheritances, but have seen people be financially reckless while anticipating a windfall. It sounds like Ashton and Mila have a good idea, though. More importantly, it sounds like they are on the same page on this.

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Photo credit: WENN Photos

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33 Responses to “Ashton Kutcher: My kids are not getting trust funds, I’ll give my money to charity”

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  1. Mishka says:

    Why haven’t stories about inappropriate behavior about Ashton come forward?

  2. HK9 says:

    Do people with that much money actually do this or do they still end up giving $$ to their kids when they die??

  3. Shannon says:

    Meh. I’ve never been even close to rich enough to consider this. But honestly, I think to put aside a “small” amount would be something to do. I can see not leaving EVERYTHING, but enough of an amount to give them a lift in life but not so much to make them never have to be careful with money or learn to budget.

    • MandyMc says:

      Trusts are not just for the super-wealthy. They can be a great estate planning tool for the middle class, especially if you have children. I’m sure they will set up some sort of trust for their children and grandchildren that covers education and health expenses. An estate as large as theirs will have to have trusts- there’s no way around that. There are tons and tons of options including chairitable remainder trusts but I SERIOUSLY doubt their kids will no trust at all.

  4. Elle says:

    I am all for not enabling more entitled humans but aren’t his kids going to be confused? I mean they are growing up in their big, safe houses, traveling around in luxury cars and jets when they feel about it, being in places where more people don’t know they exist beyond a picture at the internet. I don’t think money are evil. Having work ethic and decency are important. Is this the only way to get them?
    It reminds me of the ‘Common people’ song from Pulp.

    • VirgiliaCoriolanus says:

      I think it can be done. They may live in a nice house, have luxury cars, etc………but when they are growing up they can do a lot of things to teach them the value of work/money. If they have a house cleaner, instruct the cleaner to not clean their rooms/bathrooms/play room. If they have a cook, then have their kids clean up after him or do dishes, etc. When they are older, have them cook basic recipes, etc. Only buy them presents on birthdays/christmas. Have them get a job when they are old enough or volunteer. As long as you aren’t giving your kid every single thing they want and/or a huge allowance just because you can………and explaining how you worked hard to earn the money/luxuries that you have now, I think they’ll be fine.

      I’ve met plenty of super bratty kids who expect their parents to pay for everything even when they aren’t rich.

      • Uglyartwork says:

        I read once that Madonna would toss out Lourdes’ clothes if she left them laying on the floor/didn’t keep her room straight, and supposedly Lourdes turned out well.

      • Lexie says:

        This, exactly. I grew up quite privileged. I still had chores (far more than other kids I grew up with in similar financial circumstances) and responsibilities and were expected to make the most of the opportunities I was given. My parents paid for college but after it was over, I was on my own. And I went through hard times, but I had enough respect and know-how from my upbringing to really economize and make it work. No running home to Mommy and Daddy for $$$.

    • holly hobby says:

      Although Gordon Ramsey said he won’t leave his fortune to his kids, he did buy the house for one of his older kids. So I think although they aren’t giving everything to them, the kids aren’t exactly destitute either. They are taken care of to a degree (permanent housing, a paid education) but whatever else is up to them. I agree with this philosophy. If you leave everything to your kids you’ll end up with entitled a—holes who won’t work or thinks working is beneath them. You teach your kids how to survive and to work hard and they will do well when you are gone. Simple as that.

  5. minx says:

    This actually sounds sensible. I’m sure their kids will be educated and started on their way in life, but they can’t expect a big payday at some point.

  6. Olive says:

    I appreciate the honesty from Sting – it made me laugh to see him saying “Yeah, we’re going to spend it all” in a list of celebrities who are donating their money.

  7. Boxy Lady says:

    I don’t think either of them grew up rich so I understand why they have this plan. I mean, if I had been working since childhood like Mila (not sure about Ashton), I wouldn’t be in a hurry to give my kids all of my money either. I would want them to work for their money so that they can learn responsibility and the value of a dollar.

  8. Loopy says:

    If there are going to teach and guide their kids along the way then that is fine. I hate when these super rich parents just abruptly decide ‘no you are not getting anything, you are 18 time to leave and go be independent.’ This is confusing and a recipe for disaster look at Tori Spelling. Clueless!

  9. JA says:

    Hopefully they stick to it! My husbands coworker’s family was literally counting the minutes for grandma to die so they could get access to the money she had left. They were constantly told/reminded about the funds so made not so smart financial decisions knowing they would have a small fortune to divvy up

  10. Beapancake says:

    I plan on giving all my $ to charity as well. I think many people do. To each his own 💜

  11. S says:

    We don’t have anything even approaching the money of any of the celebs and other luminaries talked about here, but I grew up in actual poverty, so seen from that vantage point we’re quite well off. (My husband was much more middle class.) I want to, and do, give our kids things my family could never give me, but I also don’t want them to be overly reliant. They all have college funds that, will, if all goes according to forecast, allow them to attend state colleges without student loan debt, or make a hefty dent in a private education. Our goal is to actually enjoy our retirement, never having to burden them with our financial needs, but I’m also not looking to leave them much in inheritance, or buy them brand new homes or cars, as so many of our friends do. I’ve already told my kids that if their dad and I can afford a second home, it’s gonna be for us, on the beach, and they’re welcome to come visit. Occasionally. At the same time, I don’t want to deprive my kids of the opportunities and leg up our income can afford, things that I missed out on or really struggled without. I was home alone and doing the bulk of the housekeeping and younger child care by the time I was 9 and dealing with things like not having enough food and having our lights turned off or being evicted every couple months—definitely not something I want to repeat. But, at the same time, my kids can’t remember a time when we didn’t have a twice weekly housekeeper, so is asking them to make their own beds, occasionally vacuum and pick up their own toys enough to get message across, while still allowing them to be kids? It’s a balancing act for sure.

    • S says:

      And I should add we don’t give them everything they want, or even simply everything that is in our means to do. But they still have plenty. A lot. Too much probably. Honestly, I still have no freaking clue if they’re gonna turn out all right, or not, when it comes to money and financial responsibility. Growing up like I did vs growing up how they are…I’ve got no blue print. I’m just trying to do what feels right, while hoping against hope it actually IS right.

  12. Domino says:

    I know people with trust funds and they play things very nonsafe and yet sometimes are very “frugal”. They probably get somewhere between $8-10,000 per month for life, but then also are in constant fear their money will run out because they have come to rely on it so much and don’t trust their ability to earn and work. And sometimes the end of the month they stay in because they are waiting for their next month check. Bizarre.

    They get to do things like act, be artists, or ski instructors in expensive cities. Having seen those kids, I think Ashton and Mila have made the right choice. But, it is hard when your kids come begging for money not to help. And when their friends get trust funds to buy an apartment in LA or NYC or something to act, run their “business” (boomf anyone?), make connections, etc.

  13. Pandy says:

    That’s what happened to Tori Spelling and look how that worked out!

  14. teacakes says:

    Obviously their children will be more than adequately taken care of and won’t have to worry about paying for college and health care or a million other things people consider luxuries (like holidays and such), it’s not as if Ashton and Mila are going to cut them off without a penny at age 18.

    I think what they’re proposing here is pretty decent, actually – providing for their kids while trying to cut the cycle of inherited wealth (though their kids will still likely have access to opportunities and jobs thanks to them, nepotism isn’t imaginary). The kids will still be set up pretty well if they don’t have college loans to pay off as young adults.

  15. me says:

    I just find it weird that when people divorce one can get spousal support…and a lot of it if the other spouse makes good money because the spouse was “accustomed to a certain lifestyle”.
    However, with children, who YOU brought it to this world, you literally can kick them out at 18 with no money or place to live. Is this really fair? I don’t know. I wouldn’t want my kids to struggle and if I had a lot of money, they’d get pretty much all of it. Mind you, I would raise them to be responsible people not spoiled brats.

  16. CK3 says:

    Well, I hope he raises his kids in a manner that when they’re cut off, they’re not just floating aimlessly. Particularly because they’re both actors and their kids education may or may not take a hit when they have to miss schools/move to new schools/ won’t be able to hold steady jobs etc. I’m fine w/ his decision as long as he doesn’t spend their childhood shortchanging them because of his career.

  17. Frances says:

    I am also all for not raising entitled humans, but I don’t think it’s fair to raise your kids in luxury only to cut them off after 20 years of the good life. The world is becoming more and more competitive and who is to say that their kids are going to be able to ‘make it’ on their own, even with such connected parents. They may have the best work ethics and still not succeed financially. I once read that upper-middle-class kids are the most anxious because they have experienced the finer things in life but they know they might not be able to obtain such financial success on their own. Yes, I know some kids with trust funds who squander their parents’ wealth, but I also know some super stressed out upper-middle class kids who are now adults and, despite their efforts, could never come close to the affording the lifestyle they are used to. If their parents could help them out a little, the kids may be able to choose careers that would allow them to comfortably give back to the world. It all depends on the family though.

  18. diane says:

    Money doesn’t equal bad kids just like no money doesn’t equal good kids. My father was very wealthy and when he died he left a trust for each of my children. The stipulation is that enough to pay for any school they get into and then have some money left to start life. They don’t know about the money. But if my daughter wants to be a doctor, she can be and will have money. I am teaching my kids to be kind, charitable and help others. He is acting as if any money will make them horrible.

  19. bikki says:

    I personally knew a person who’d be considered a trust fund baby (we used to be friends). and I think if her parents had had this mentality it would have helped her in the long run. why do I say that? because the person is completely unmotivated and just banks on the money her grandpa had earned back in the day. poor work ethic, a massive depression, and no direction in life. of course this is just one example, but imo I like Ashton/Mila’s take on this.

  20. Tana says:

    I find this annoying because we are saving so hard to provide a good life for my child and give her a safety net. If he put aside a little for his kids future, that would be good. Leaving them nothing is crazy.