Some people view estate planning in a rather cold and clinical manner. They know they have to leave instructions with regard to the way they want their monetary assets to be transferred when the time comes. These folks do not look beyond the impersonal slicing of a pie into different sizes.
There is another way to approach the process that is commonly described as legacy planning. When you embrace this concept, you shape the way that you will be remembered in certain ways.
Passing Along Family Heirlooms
If you have items in your possession that can be described as family heirlooms, you can carefully consider the person that will be the ideal caretaker for each object. In addition to the things that have been passed down to you, a new chain can begin with some items that you have acquired during your life.
When someone in the family has often admired a painting or a piece of jewelry, you know that that this particular piece would mean a lot to them. You can take this into consideration when you are putting your legacy plan together.
You could actually consider giving these gifts while you are still living, and this can be a very meaningful act.
Personal Memoirs and Family History
A lot of people have used the phrase “I could write a book.” Everyone has a story to tell, and you don’t have to be a professional writer to record events in your life that have helped to shape you as a person.
If you share your personal memoirs with family members, they will come away with a better understanding of your path.
In the same vein, you could record the family history that you remember. Many people become very interested in their genealogy at some point in time, and the direct personal memories of an elder can be an invaluable resource for years to come.
An ethical will is another document that can be part of your legacy plan. Ethical wills stem from the Judaic tradition going back to biblical times. You can use an ethical will to pass along your moral and spiritual values which could be alternately referred to as “rules to live by.”
In addition to this particular objective, modern end-of-life experts are recommending the utilization of freestyle ethical wills. You can look at this type of will as a final letter to your loved ones, and you can share any thoughts, observations, and/or pieces of advice that the you would like them to consider.
If you are in a position to set aside some resources for worthy causes, you can establish a legacy of generosity if you engage in acts of charitable giving. Donor advised funds are very popular, because you can direct the fund to use a single contribution to support multiple different charitable organizations.
A private foundation is another option that you may want to explore. Many people are surprised to hear that most foundations in the United States are funded with less than $1 million. There are also charitable trusts that can be a good choice for some people that have philanthropic aims.
Attend a Free Webinar!
We are holding a number of webinars over the coming weeks, and you can obtain a great deal of information if you attend one of these sessions. There is no admission charge, and you don’t have to go anywhere to join us, so this a great opportunity to build on your knowledge.
To see the schedule, visit our webinar page. When you identify the session that you would like to attend, follow the simple instructions to register so we can reserve your spot.