Most people focus purely on monetary matters when they consider the subject of estate planning. This is certainly understandable, and it is important to suitably provide for your loved ones on this level.
At the same time, you could take a more comprehensive approach and engage in the process of legacy planning. This would include leaving behind important pieces of your heart, mind, and soul.
Throughout your life, members of your family have invariably come to you looking for advice during confusing times. You may come to peace with your own mortality when you start to reach an advanced age. However, the thought of not being around when your loved ones need you may be disconcerting.
This is a feeling that people have had for thousands of years. During biblical times, a document called an ethical will was used to account for this dynamic, and they are still utilized to this day.
In an ethical will, you record your moral and spiritual values that can be looked upon as “rules to live by.” You will not always be around to share insight person-to-person, but this document can endure, and family members would be able to access it whenever they have the need or the inclination.
Items that have been passed down from generation to generation have a great deal of emotional meaning, and they have historical value as well. When you are devising your legacy plan, you can carefully evaluate the heirlooms that you have in your possession and decide on the ideal caretaker for each object.
As an elder, you have lived through many events that helped to shape you and your family. If you take the time to record your memoirs in writing or in audio form, your surviving family members can learn a lot. They can gain a deeper understanding of you as a person, and they can also learn about the times that you experienced.
There is one element that we will look at here that does have something to do with monetary resources. Charitable giving can be very rewarding if you have the ability to set aside some funds to boost causes and/or institutions that are meaningful to you. This can be through a direct gift, or the funding of a particular project that would bear your name.
A private family foundation is another option that could potentially work for some people. While we have all heard of foundations that have been started by some of the wealthiest families in the country, most foundations are funded with less than $1 million.
Donor advised funds are also very popular among people that want to set aside assets for the benefit of others in an efficient manner.
Download Our Estate Planning Worksheet
We have provided a bit of food for thought in this blog post, and there are plenty of additional posts that you can explore. Plus, the blog is not our only source of information, because we have other viable resources on this website.
One of them is our estate planning worksheet, and there is no charge at all for this valuable tool. To get your copy, visit our worksheet page and follow the simple instructions.
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