As you go through life, you want to make a positive impression and make a difference in a number of different ways. You may have specific career goals, you want to be a good member of the community, and you certainly want to raise your children well.
This mentality can be applied to your estate planning efforts. There is a more comprehensive form of estate planning that is called legacy planning. When you look at the bigger picture, you can do everything possible to have a lasting influence, even after you are gone.
There are numerous different components that can be included in your legacy plan. Clearly, facilitating asset transfers will be a priority, and there are different ways that you can go about it. For example, you can take steps to protect a spendthrift, and you can create a trust that is laden with incentives to guide a loved one in the right direction.
If you are a high net worth individual, you would also want to take steps to protect your wealth from the potential impact of the federal estate tax when you are devising your legacy plan.
Taking care of your family should be your first priority, but you could also consider charitable giving when you are thinking about the way that you will be remembered after you pass away. You could potentially create a private foundation, and there are also charitable trusts that can be used to set aside resources for worthy causes and institutions.
Family heirlooms would also enter the picture. The items that have been passed down to you have immense historical and emotional significance, and they tell tales about the family members that have come before you. Over the years, various loved ones may have expressed interest in different items that you have in your possession. You can think the matter over long and hard and make sure that each heirloom gets into the ideal pair of hands.
Your legacy plan can also include knowledge sharing. As an older person, you have early memories that your younger family members would probably find to be quite interesting. If you record your personal memoirs in writing, you will be giving a very meaningful gift to your loved ones.
An ethical will can also be part of the plan. With this type of will, you pass along the moral and spiritual values that you have lived by throughout your life.
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