Baby boomers know money isn’t the only important aspect of estate planning. For example, a 2012 study released by the Allianz Life Insurance Co. showed baby boomers wanted to leave their family more than just financial assets. Researchers found baby boomers identified family values as some of the most important things to pass down to heirs.
In 2012’s economic climate, it’s no wonder family values were at the top of the list. In economic downturns, financial inheritances are always more tenuous than the consistent worth of family values. Thus, family values (tax-free of course!), made the top of the list in importance.
But what is interesting is a similar study released by Allianz in 2005 which showed family values were also among the most important legacies boomers wanted to leave behind, even though the economy was more robust.
What these studies demonstrate is the enduring importance of family values, morals and meaningful possessions as part of a carefully crafted estate plan, regardless of the economic climate.
Do you have family values you wish to pass on? Of course you do! And yet you likely haven’t acted to ensure the legacy you are creating is the one you really want to leave behind.
Including family values in your estate plan can be easy, when it’s built into the process, though that is not the norm with most estate planning lawyers or with the DIY legal document services. You should consider including written memoirs, video or audio recordings of family stories in your estate plan. Think about it. These are the things most likely to be lost after your death. While your finances will be managed per estate law, intangible values and lessons have no protection and easily fade away soon after you die.
Could you imagine how valuable it would be to hear your family history directly in the words of your grandparents, great-grandparents or even earlier generations right now? What would that be worth? Can you even put a price on it?
I encourage you to think of estate planning not as just a set of documents. If you want to pass down a truly holistic legacy, one that manages and preserves both your finances and your family values, you absolutely can. Work with a lawyer who will guide you in creating a comprehensive estate plan that protects and preserves your whole wealth – not just your financial assets, but your family’s heritage, too. Your heirs will be all the richer for it.
Dedicated to empowering your family, increasing your wealth and building your legacy,