...by the time his father died, in 1995, Mitt Romney was already a very wealthy man, thanks in large part to the many advantages he enjoyed as the son of a prominent politician and corporate executive. Romney could afford, at that point in his life, to give away his father’s estate. (To charities and, notably, to his children — both common means of avoiding the brunt of the estate tax.) He gave his father’s estate away because he’d already enjoyed its many advantages...
Romney spent only a year at Stanford, and finished his degree at the less prestigious Brigham Young, at which point he was accepted into Harvard Law and then the very exclusive joint law/business degree program. When that happened, his father, by the way, was a cabinet secretary.
And of course while Romney was getting his degree, he didn’t have to do anything rash like “go into debt” or “work,” because, as Ann Romney helpfully explained in 1994, the young couple survived by selling stock Romney received from his father. At BYU: “Neither one of us had a job, because Mitt had enough of an investment from stock that we could sell off a little at a time.”
Mitt Romney, self-made man - Salon.com