The Series 65 and Series 66 exams ask a handful of questions about estates and trusts, and you could end up seeing the phrase per stirpes on a test question. In fact, you'll likely bump into it in your financial planning activities, so it is worth knowing even if it doesn't show up. As I just pulled from a Transfer on Death Beneficiary Agreement for a brokerage account, " the term 'per stirpes' shall mean the following:
if any primary or contingent Beneficiary does not survive the account owner, but leaves surviving descendants, any share otherwise payable to such Beneficiary shall instead be paid to such Beneficiary's surviving descendants."
And, there you have it. If a will, a trust, or a transfer on death account name a beneficiary, the term "per stirpes" means that if that beneficiary is to be paid but has passed away, his or her share passes to his or her own beneficiaries. Pass the Series 66 exam