Your legacy is the totality of who you are, but who you are today is not necessarily who you were yesterday or who you will be tomorrow. So, even if you were smart enough to have a lawyer prepare a traditional estate plan, you may find that is not enough to protect your legacy. Fortunately, the work you have done provides a good foundation for developing a solid plan. Here is how to turn your estate plan into a legacy plan.
Build a legacy team
Legacy planning goes a step further than estate planning. It is the creation of a definitive plan for managing your total wealth while you’re alive, distributing your estate how you choose after your death, and a clear plan to pass on your legacy. It is a team endeavor involving advisors with individual expertise. Typically, your team will include a law attorney, a tax accountant, and a wealth advisor. From there, it will grow based on your individual circumstances. You may end up with an insurance agent, family coach or wellness trainer on your team. Collectively, these experts can guide you to achieve your greatest success in life, which will ultimately be your legacy.
Adopt a legacy mindset
Think of your legacy plan like a process. Too often people think once they’ve signed their traditional estate planning documents – will, trusts, etc. – their work is done. In reality, that is the starting line. Your will and/or trusts provide a blueprint for your success and are the framework through which your legacy is going to live and evolve.
Understand what you have set up
Once you have your team in place, you need to determine what it does and does not achieve. Empower your team to review your estate plan. A good estate plan will determine what happens to your assets upon your death while mitigating the amount of your estate taxes.
Design and implementation of your legacy plan
While there may be a legal structure and system in place to protect, preserve and grow your legacy assets, your legacy plan is about establishing and committing to a process that enables you and your legacy team to remain proactive and intentional in implementing your plan.
Your plan needs to evolve as you evolve. With the right process and team in place, your plan can achieve its greatest success and solidify your legacy