In the days leading to the $1.6 billion Powerball jackpot many of my clients advised me that they would be retaining me once they had the winning numbers. None of them called as winners, but it is encouraging to know my clients realize that huge sums of money require help. The primary concern is privacy. In Maryland a winner can claim a ticket anonymously. Once you have the winnings there are tax concerns, management of the money, and plenty of people and organizations asking for assistance.
Likewise, large inheritances can cause the same problems as lottery winnings. There are tax consequences and the money must be managed. There will be plenty of people and organizations asking for assistance. You need to come up with a plan to make sure the windfall is used wisely. Hopefully, the person leaving you the money has left instructions on how the sum is to be used. A trust can prevent potential creditors from making nuisance claims against you. Just like the Powerball winner you should call a lawyer for assistance when you receive a large inheritance. At a minimum you will need to know the tax consequences of the bequest and need to make sure that your heirs are given instructions if the money comes their way.