Discussing end of life matters can be uncomfortable for everyone involved. However, failing to deal with and address that discomfort can lead to a serious problem -- no legacy to leave behind. Tackling this difficult topic and delving into estate planning can ensure that a person's final wishes are respected, and one's legacy preserved.
Leaving behind the right legacy is important, especially for those in California who are charitable-minded. These individuals can use wills and trusts to carry on charitable giving and donations even after their death. This important aspect of estate planning is often overlooked, and many people who make regular charitable donations forget to include it in their estate or wrongly assume that their loved ones will carry on the tradition.
Legacy can also involve how people remember you. For some, this includes their final days of life. No estate plan is complete without an advanced health care directive -- also called a living will -- which outlines a person's wishes regarding medical care and interventions. A health care power of attorney should also be included, which will give another person the legal right to make those decisions on the maker's behalf, in specified circumstances.
Estate planning is more than just dictating how much inheritance children should get. California residents can use their estate plans to create an ongoing legacy that reflects their values and what was most important to them during their lives. It is important to consider what role charitable giving, health care directives and other planning documents can contribute to a comprehensive estate plan.
Source: investopedia.com, "Leaving a Legacy: Why You Need An Estate Plan", Kay Kramer, Jan. 5, 2018