People who are known for their charitable work or want to leave a charitable legacy behind should consider setting up a trust that will help to fund a charity. You can use estate planning to leave money to an existing charity, or you can use your trust to start a charity of your own. Some people even take out life insurance policies and have the proceeds go to their charity of choice. Before you start leaving money to a charity or starting one in your estate planning, you should make sure you are doing the right thing for you and your legacy.
How Well do you Know the Charity?
If you are considering leaving a considerable sum of money to an existing charity, then you should do research to make sure you know what the charity is all about. Some people work with charities for years and do not realize that those charities have dark pasts or questionable objectives. You should never leave money to a charity until you know everything you need to know about it as supporting a questionable charity could ruin your legacy.
Consider More Than Money
Would your charity of choice benefit from having your vehicle after you pass on as well as cash? Charities are businesses that work for the benefit of others and not their own financial gains. As businesses, charities have the same needs that for-profit businesses have when it comes to equipment and other items. You should do an inventory of your possessions and discuss leaving some of them to your favorite charity to help your charity to continue its work.
Make Sure it is the Right Move
Before finalizing your charitable donation in your trust or estate, you should seek out advice from your attorney and possibly your accountant. Leaving money or other items to a charity could have tax implications for your descendants. You may also find out more information about the charity by having a discussion with your attorney or experts in the field of charitable organizations. Including a charity in your estate is an important move, and you will want to make sure that you are doing the right thing by talking to other experts.
Discuss it With Your Family
The decisions you make in regards to your estate directly affect your family. That is not to say that you should allow your family to talk you out of making a charitable donation in your estate planning, but it is something you should discuss with your family. Your family might agree wholeheartedly with your decision and encourage you to do more for the charity of your choice. A decision like this that is made with the entire family can make everyone feel better about the decision when you do pass away.
Many people spend their lives giving to others and working with charitable organizations. It only makes sense that those people want to provide for those charitable organizations after they have passed on. But making a charitable donation part of your estate is not as easy as it sounds. You need to gather good information and discuss your decision with plenty of people before you decide to make provisions in your estate for the charity of your choice.