How to Incorporate Family Values in Your Estate Planning

family value estate planning

Baby boomers know money isn’t the only important aspect of estate planning.

A 2012 study released by the Allianz Life Insurance, Co. showed baby boomers wanted to leave their family more than just financial assets.

Researchers found baby boomers identified family values as some of the most important things to pass down to heirs.

In 2012’s economic climate, it’s no wonder family values imparted through stories, life lessons, and family possessions were at the top of the list. In an economic downturn, financial inheritances are more tenuous, unlike the abiding worth of family values. Thus, family values, tax-free of course, made the top of the list in importance.

But what is interesting is a similar study released by Allianz in 2005 which showed family values were also among the most important legacies boomers wanted to leave behind, even though the economy was more robust.

What these studies demonstrate is the enduring importance of family values, morals and meaningful possessions as part of a carefully crafted estate plan, regardless of the economic climate.

Do you have family values you wish to pass on? Of course you do. And yet you likely haven’t taken action to ensure the legacy you are leaving is the one you really want to leave behind.

How to Include Family Values

Including family values in your estate plan can be easy, when it’s built into the process, though that is not the norm with most estate planning lawyers or with the DIY legal document services.

Consider including written memoirs, video or audio recordings of family stories in your estate plan. These are the valuables most likely to be lost after your death. While your finances will be managed according to estate law, intangible values and lessons have no protection and are most often lost when you die.

Could you imagine how valuable it would be to hear your family history directly in the words of your grandparents, great-grandparents or even earlier generations right now?

If you want to pass down a truly holistic legacy, one that manages and preserves both your finances and your family values, start by coming in to meet with us for a Family Wealth Planning Session. As your Personal Family Lawyer®, we will guide you in creating a comprehensive estate plan that protects and preserves your family’s heritage.

Before the session, we’ll send you a Family Wealth Inventory and Assessment to complete that will get you thinking about what you own, what matters most to you and what you want to leave behind.

Jennifer Cochran-Green

She currently serves as President on the Board of Directors of Adoption Knowledge Affiliates and wrote a storybook about adopting a child to help adoptive parents talk about adoption with their children. She loves spending time with her husband and daughter, mountain biking, writing, and sewing. Learn More

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