The United States has a well deserved reputation as a charitable place. Our people willingly donate time and treasure to a variety of causes. Given our generosity, it is somewhat curious that charities are not given more consideration as part of estate planning. Our attorneys recommend that all of our clients reflect on those non-profit organizations (church/chapel/synagogue, private school or college, disease or illness research and treatment groups, etc.) that have meant the most to you and/or had a great impact on your life. Consider including a provision in your will or trust which leaves a set amount or a percentage of your estate to those charities you value the most. Many people find such a gift to be a life affirming process.
Also, consider how charitable giving can be used to reduce or eliminate estate taxes. Many estate planning vehicles are available. These can be created during your lifetime or after your death. Gifts made while you are still alive can provide immediate tax benefits while still allowing you to retain some control over your assets and while also providing you with lifetime income.
Our attorneys are experienced in setting up many charitable vehicles and can help find the best options for you. Feel free to fill out our estate planning questionnaire to get the process stared.