Don’t just leave Assets…Leave a Legacy!
When I say “Leave a Legacy”, it isn’t just about leaving your heirs with a pile of money or property (which we all wish we could do – but it just isn’t in the cards for many of us) – rather, the “Legacy” I speak of has to do with HOW you leave your assets.
A Legacy is thinking about, caring for, and planning for your loved ones and the long lasting-effect that planning will have on them.
Your loved ones will remember you for not just what you left behind, but of how thoughtfully you planned for them.
They will remember that at a time when they were under a great amount of despair and stress - your passing, you ensured they had to do nothing except focus on their grieving process.
You already put someone in charge of paying your debts and closing your accounts.
You put someone responsible in charge of making sure all of your assets were transferred to your intended beneficiaries.
You made plans for your burial.
You made your wishes about a wake vs. a Celebration of Life clear.
You get the point here: the amount of stress and decision making you relieve them of is something they will remember, talk about, and maybe even copy in their own lives – all because they see what a great job you did!
I don't need an Estate Plan. My family will figure it out.
You should also think about how your loved ones will handle your Estate if you don’t express your wishes by pre-planning.
They likely aren’t going to know what to do. Therefore, they’ll just Google estate attorneys and select someone while not in their right mind (as stress greatly affects our decision-making abilities) and can agree to terms that don't express your wishes and are unnecessarily expensive. Unfortunately, this is common occurrence simply because those you leave behind don’t understand what your wishes were, what needs to be done and/or they just “don’t want to deal with it” themselves.
Closing an Estate can be a difficult and stressful work (yes, it is work), not to mention time-consuming and expensive when/if mistakes are made.
Therefore, your loved ones are unlikely to be able (or want) to do it themselves.
And why would you pile the stress of your decision-making failure on them at such a difficult time? You aren’t doing them any favors. In fact, most will just pass off the duties of closing your Estate by hastily hiring a local attorney who says they do estate work, but in actuality, it’s just a field tacked on to their list of practices and really don’t specialize in the field.
Choosing the wrong attorney can be very wasteful in terms of time and money. A bad choice can greatly add to the stress your loved ones are already under, as well as add to the fees and costs billed to your final estate.
You making the tough decisions now will reduce those fees and costs and eliminate all of the unnecessary decision making stress on your loved ones later.
Costs incurred by hiring an attorney after-the-fact will likely cost a lot more than simple Estate Planning would have – thereby reducing the overall value of the Estate you pass on.
Your Legacy of smart and caring decision-making will be remembered for years to come.
Or would you rather leave a Legacy of stress, bad decision-making and stories of what NOT to do if you want to preserve your life's work? Of course not!
That is what proper Estate Planning is all about…and I can help you achieve that goal.
Ready to get started on your Legacy with a savvy Minnesota Estate Plan?
Related Minnesota Estate Planning Posts:
Do I need an Estate Plan? A question everyone should ask themselves. Minnesota Estate Planning Attorney Scott Maki explains why every Minnesotan should have at least SOME kind of Estate Plan.
A Will is a good, and necessary, starting point for any Estate Plan. But there are many scenarios today that a Will ALONE simply cannot address
Why should you use a Trust when a Will so much cheaper? A Will IS a basic, and necessary, part of any Estate Plan, but they are no match for the power of Trusts. Check out these 14 Top Benefits of Trusts to find out why!