Legacy planning goes beyond financial aspects. It’s an all-encompassing approach to estate planning that not only includes wealth transfer but also reflects your values, life lessons, and wishes for your family’s future.
Many of us desire to leave a lasting legacy, to make a significant impact that extends beyond our lifetimes. It isn’t just about leaving assets to our heirs but also about ensuring they use those assets responsibly and in line with our guiding principles.
Legacy planning provides this opportunity. It allows you to shape how future generations will remember you and helps them carry forward your legacy. However, to achieve this, you need to understand what legacy planning involves and why it is crucial.
Where Do You Start?
Legacy planning begins with identifying the values and lessons you wish to pass on to your family. What life lessons did you learn? What values guided you in your journey? These questions will help you define the personal legacy you wish to leave.
Next, consider your charitable contributions. Legacy planning allows you to incorporate philanthropy, enabling you to support the causes you care about long after you’re gone. Do you want to establish a scholarship fund? Or perhaps support a local charity? Your legacy plan can outline these desires, ensuring your charitable goals continue to thrive.
Of course, wealth transfer is an essential part of legacy planning too. Here, you will detail how you wish to divide your assets among your heirs. You might choose to pass down certain assets directly, place others in a trust, or even establish a family business succession plan.
Remember, legacy planning isn’t merely about wealth distribution. It’s also about providing your heirs with the knowledge and values they need to handle this wealth responsibly. Financial education can form a part of your legacy, arming your family with vital skills to manage and grow their inheritance.
An effective legacy plan also considers tax implications. With the right strategies, you can minimize estate taxes (if necessary) and maximize the wealth that goes to your beneficiaries. Even if you don’t have estate tax exposure, your plan should provide tax efficiency.
But legacy planning doesn’t stop at drafting an initial plan. It’s a dynamic process that evolves with your life changes. As your family grows and your wealth increases, your legacy plan should adapt accordingly. Regular updates ensure your plan remains aligned with your current wishes and circumstances.
Communication Is Key
In addition, your legacy plan should not be a secret. Communicating your plan with your family ensures everyone understands your intentions, reducing potential conflicts after your passing. This open communication also provides a platform to discuss your values, fostering a stronger bond within your family.
Access Our Free Estate Planning Worksheet!
We have produced an estate planning worksheet that you can use to gain a better understanding of this important process. This is a free resource, so you have every reason to take advantage of it right now. To grab the worksheet, click this link and follow the simple instructions.
Ready to Put a Plan in Place?
If you’re ready to work with a Tulsa, OK estate planning lawyer to develop a legacy plan, our doors are open. We can be reached by phone at 918-615-2700, or you can alternately use our contact form to send us a message.
In addition to this location, we have a long-standing Oklahoma City office, and the number there is 405-843-6100.