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Planning and drafting wills to include charitable donations

Choosing how assets should be divided after death can be a difficult decision. When creating wills, many people tend to think of their immediate family members in determining who should be given what item or how monetary assets should be split up. However, with a growing number of individuals in Florida and across the country choosing to forego children, many choose to consider where their money would do the most good after they are gone.

This, in-and-of itself, can take time and merit careful consideration. Some may choose to gift funds or items to someone who may have inspired them. Others may make bequests to charitable foundations, whose work is something they admire or believe in. Medical causes, such as cancer research or addiction programs, are also frequently considered.

No matter how an individual would like their assets divided, proper planning is vital. Unfortunately, many Americans neglect to execute a will until they reach the later years of their life. However, waiting to document these wishes could lead to issues after they are gone, including battles over the estate by surviving relatives.

Creating wills to include the donation of assets to other people or entities, other than family members, is often about reflecting a personal legacy. It is a way for Florida residents to mark their success in life and also make an impact with respect to causes that are significant to them. To ensure desired charitable donations are properly executed, creating a will and keeping all information and asset allocation up to date is an important step in protecting those final wishes.

Source: The New York Times, "In Estate Planning, Family Isn't Always First", Caitlin Kelly, May 2, 2014

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