During the holidays, and especially on Thanksgiving, we will often gather together with family members and reflect on things for which we are grateful. Not everyone, however, thinks about gratitude when we create estate plans. A main aim of estate planning is preparing for all the what ifs, but an estate plan can take on even more meaning if we include gratitude in our plans. Take a second to think about what you are grateful for and how you can show gratitude in your estate plan. To be helpful, we have provided some ideas below.
Give a gift to a Charity
This is probably what you think of first when you think of gratitude. Give to a charity that has affected you in some way. Maybe a charity dedicated to eradicating a disease that you struggled with in life. You could give a charitable gift to a religious organization that supported you in difficult times.
Depending on how you gift property you can also save on taxes. Some common methods for gifting in a way to avoid taxes include charitable trusts (either a charitable lead trust or a charitable remainder trust). You can also give in a way that helps you with income taxes. It is necessary to talk to a Certified Financial Planner, a Certified Public Accountant, or/and an estate planning attorney to learn of all the various ways that your charitable giving can benefit your taxes.
Give to your family in a meaningful way
You can also show your family gratitude by giving in a thoughtful way that communicates your values. Typically, family members do not just give each other large sums of money while living and why should this be any different when you pass away. It is a great exercise to think of ways that you can use your gifts to help your family members achieve greatness.
Incentive trusts can benefit younger beneficiaries by encouraging them to travel, achieve higher levels of education, or to take on great causes. This type of planning should be done with a professional because while you have great causes that will benefit your beneficiaries, you also need to plan on the fact that some of your beneficiaries may not be in a position mentally or physically to do the things that you would like them to do. For this reason, it is good to discuss this type of planning with a professional who has experience in administering trusts.
We are here to Help
If you live in Riverside or San Diego Counties, we would love to assist you in creating an estate plan that communicates your values and helps you create a legacy of love. Call us at (951)304-3431.