According to the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), an astonishing 60 % of Americans don’t have medical directives, a will, or an estate plan. With death being one of the few certainties in life, this figure is somewhat surprising on its face. However, many people are uncomfortable with estate planning, because they feel it focuses on the unpleasant end. Estate planning, however, is an opportunity for all of us to determine how we want to be remembered. It is our chance to craft our own legacy.
Estate Planning: Your Business Legacy
Many business owners intend on passing their business on to their children, but they don’t have a business succession plan. Consider whether your children are equally prepared to run the business or whether some children might be better suited to run the business, where others may benefit from inheriting other assets. Alternatively, a business succession plan may appoint an outside party to run the business, with the children benefiting from the profits of the business. There are many ways of approaching passing on your business legacy. Finding the method best for you requires a detailed discussion with your estate
Estate Planning: Your Property Legacy
Whether you have a family home, a beach house, or a vacation compound, you decide to whom your property goes. If you want the property to go to your spouse during the balance of their life, and then to the children, this must be detailed in an estate plan. Otherwise, your spouse may leave the property to their new husband or wife upon their death. If you’d like the home to go directly to a favorite grandchild, this desire must be properly and legally documented. Perhaps you’d like to establish a trust, for the beach house for the enjoyment of all your descendants. This trust might include funding for expenses such as property taxes and home repairs, so your descendants don’t bear those costs.
Estate Planning: Your Charities
You can leave some or all of your property and possessions to your favorite charity if you wish. Because of tax considerations, there are different approaches to leaving money to charities. Careful discussions with the charity of your choice, guided by informed conversations with your estate attorney, allows for proper planning. The charity or charities of your choice can benefit greatly from your gift, when properly planned out and given.
Estate Planning: Limited Only by Your Imagination
What you do with your property, possessions, and money is your business – as long as you plan for your death. Without proper estate planning, the government decides how your possessions will be distributed. Because you have the option to designate where your property goes upon your death, why not take advantage. Let your imagination run wild. As long as your desire is not illegal, you can bequeath your business, your property, and your wealth, in almost any manner you desire.
Creating Your Legacy with Proper Estate Planning
At Doane&Doane, P.A., we look forward to the opportunity to assist you in crafting your legacy. Whether you plan to leave your business to your children, or bequeath the vacation home directly to the grandchildren, or look forward to providing funding for your favorite charity, our estate planning attorneys can assist you in meeting your goals. If you are uncertain how you want to proceed, our experience in estate planning has provided us with plenty of inspiring examples over the years. We offer free consultations. Contact us at 561-656-0200 to discuss your desires for your personal legacy.