“A survey done by the financial services company HBSC finds that only 59% of U.S. parents intend to leave their children an inheritance, the lowest of the 15 nations studied. The fact the U.S. is last came as no surprise to me. What did surprise me was that 59% seemed high.” – Larry Light
As you plan for your retirement, for old age and even for your estate, there are just so many questions to ask and answers to give. For example, when it comes to your estate, most children assume their parents will leave it all to them. But is that your only option? A recent Forbes article takes a different tack and asks “Why Bother Leaving an Inheritance for the Kids?” What is an inheritance to you and to your loved ones? What does it mean? There are, in fact, many mature Americans who no longer see the value in leaving an inheritance to their children and, instead, intend to die broke. Interestingly, the author of the Forbes article offers a name for people of this persuasion: “Die Brokers.”
Perhaps Die Brokers worry about the negative influence of free money. Maybe they would like to see a little more “hustle” out of their would-be heirs. Whatever the reason, the Die Brokers appear to be keener on enjoying their own money in their own lifetime. Are these folks in the minority? Maybe not. A recent study the financial company HSBC ranked the U.S. lowest out of the 15 countries studied in terms of parents reporting that they intended to leave an inheritance to their children. The percentage was a mere 59%. Who is to say what the right approach is? After all, cannot those who earned and saved decide what to do with the financial representation of their efforts? So, do you not want to leave an inheritance to your children? Or, a step further, do you want to ensure that there is no inheritance and join the ranks of the Die Brokers?
Either way, how will you accomplish your objective? While it is easier to spend the coffers dry, if you intend to leave an intentional inheritance to your loved ones, then plan to consult with an experienced estate planning attorney.
You can learn more about this topic as well as other strategies on our website under the tab entitled: estate planning in Virginia. Be sure you also sign up for our complimentary e-newsletter so that you may be informed of all the latest issues that could affect you, your loved ones and your estate planning.
Reference: Forbes (February 27, 2014) “Why Bother Leaving an Inheritance for the Kids?”