4 Steps to Sharing Your Estate Plans With Your Family
You're probably more comfortable talking about your finances and plans for charitable giving than your children are about asking you to cover these sensitive subjects. So make it easy on them by bringing up the subject first. You'll be doing everyone a favor.
What Will You Tell the Family?
As a general rule, involve everyone in everything. So says management guru Tom Peters. This adage aptly applies to including your family in decisions you have made to support our mission. Sharing financial information with your family now may seem difficult, but not sharing your plans almost guarantees misunderstanding later.
Follow these four steps:
- Start by deciding who "family" is. Carefully consider the family members who may need to be—or think they need to be—part of the conversation. Your spouse, children, grandchildren, siblings, and even former spouses and in-laws may have emotional connections to your financial decisions.
- Consider whether you would feel more comfortable and communicate more effectively if a trusted advocate—a third party such as your attorney or financial advisor—is present and can objectively support what you say. Just as it's your life, it's your responsibility to be forthright about your desires and limitations.
- Schedule your discussion around an occasion that celebrates your life and your family, when it seems natural for you to talk about life's milestones and what is important to you. Begin by openly sharing what you intend to accomplish through the financial decisions you've made.
- Recap by explaining to family how philanthropy is an extension of your life's work and how it meets your charitable and financial objectives. We stand ready to assist you in this with detailed information that you can relay to loved ones. Please contact a Genesis Foundation at 309-281-4392 or firstname.lastname@example.org so we can be of help.
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The information on this website is not intended as legal or tax advice. For legal or tax advice, please consult an attorney. Figures cited in examples are for hypothetical purposes only and are subject to change. References to estate and income taxes apply to federal taxes only. State income/estate taxes or state law may impact your results.