When you think about estate planning, and you have not looked into it thoroughly, you may reduce the matter to the creation of a last will. You do have to utilize asset transfer methods when you plan your estate, but there is considerably more to think about if you want to be fully prepared.
Leaving the people that you love behind will have many effects on those people. Yes, it is important to think about financial matters, but there are also matters of the heart that can enter the picture.
Legacy planning is a more complete form of estate planning. Your legacy is the way that you will be remembered, and you can be proactive about influencing these memories.
In this post, we will provide you with some suggestions with regard to how you may be able to shape a lasting legacy when you are engaged in your planning efforts.
The last will or last will and testament is not the only type of will that is used in the field of estate planning. Another type of will is called an ethical will. These wills stem from the Judaic tradition, and they have been used since biblical times. You use an ethical will to record moral and spiritual values for your loved ones to draw from after your passing.
People in your family have undoubtedly come to you for guidance during difficult times throughout their lives. You will not always be around to provide insight, but you can make your “rules to live by” available if you take the time to compose an ethical will.
They say that a picture is worth 1000 words, and this is something to take into consideration when you are crafting your legacy. The heirlooms that you have in your possession are like time capsules that contain sentiment, history, and love. You may want to take stock of all of the heirlooms that you have, and carefully consider the perfect recipient for each item.
While you have been traversing your path through life, you have undoubtedly been touched by different causes and organizations that are meaningful to you. You may be in a position to give something back when you are creating a legacy plan.
There are various ways that you can facilitate transfers to charities. It is clearly possible to give direct gifts, but there are other possibilities.
There are those who create private charitable foundations. When you think about the most well-known foundations, like the Ford Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, you may assume that you have to be a billionaire to start a foundation. In fact, when you look into the subject, you find that most foundations in the country are operating with less than $1 million.
If a foundation is not right for you, you could consider a charitable trust. These trusts can provide tax advantages along with the personal benefits. Donor advised funds are also used by many people who want to engage in philanthropy.
There is no substitute for longevity when it comes to experience. As an elder, you have interacted with family members who are long gone, and you are an irreplaceable link in a chain that younger people can barely access.
You are in a unique position to share your family history in writing. This profound act could be part of the plan.
For the most part, to this point we have made an effort to emphasize legacy planning ideas that do not revolve around monetary matters. At the same time, if you have been able to accumulate significant wealth, the federal estate tax can be a factor for you.
This tax carries a 40 percent maximum rate, and it is applicable on transfers that exceed $5.45 million in value. You can usually transfer unlimited assets to your spouse tax-free, but transfers to others are potentially subject to taxation. If the value of your estate is going to exceed the estate tax exclusion, there are steps that you can take to preserve your wealth for the benefit of your loved ones.
Schedule a Consultation
If you would like to take a holistic approach to estate planning through the implementation of a legacy plan, we can answer all of your questions and help you establish a framework.
Our firm offers consultations to people in and around Charlotte, NC, and you can give us a call at (704) 944-3245 or send us a message through our contact page to set up an appointment.
Latest posts by John Potter (see all)
- Our Ashland Trust Attorney Explains How a QTIP Trust Works - February 18, 2019
- What Happens If I Leave Assets Out of My Living Trust? - February 15, 2019
- What are the Advantages of an Irrevocable Trust? - February 14, 2019