Estate planning is more than tax planning. Beyond finances, you should have goals for your estate plan. Are there specific charities you’d like to support? Do you want to encourage your children to be entrepreneurs? Do you want your grandchildren to get the best education available?
Answering such questions can help you frame your estate plan. In addition, it can lead to valuable discussions among family members of different generations. If you are uncertain about starting such discussions, a financial advisor can be brought in to facilitate the conversation.
This advisor (who might be a lawyer, an accountant, or a financial planner) can set up a family meeting, or a series of meetings, in which the family’s financial strategy will be discussed. You can talk about your assets, indicating how they’ve been managed, and indicate what you are attempting to achieve with your estate plan.
Questions can be answered at these meetings, and misperceptions can be straightened out. Without last-minute surprises, your eventual wealth transfer can go smoothly and you can leave the legacy you really wanted.