planned giving - why have a will

Why You Need a Will

Most Americans don’t have a will. They will work to build a life and home for themselves and take care of their friends and family along the way. Unfortunately at the end of their lives, without a will, their property is up to state law instead of being distributed to their friends, family, or charity organizations of their choosing. Shouldn’t it be up to you to decide where your property goes?

  • The first goal in estate planning is to make sure that your “wealth” or “stuff” is passed down to the people and organizations when and how you’d prefer
  • The second goal in planning a transfer is to minimize taxes and other expenses.

With a Will, You Can:

  • Plan who will receive your assets, and how and when they will be distributed;
  • Name an executor to manage the estate the way you would like;
  • Create trusts for your spouse, children, or other loved ones to create income and save taxes for your beneficiaries;
  • Minimize and sometimes eliminate estate taxes; and
  • Make gifts to charity. A charitable organization cannot inherit from somebody who dies without a will.

Carpe’ Diem

It’s important to kickstart this process soon! Many people shy away from making end-of-life decisions, but planning the way your assets are divided ensures that your resources will be passed down efficiently and in the manner of your choosing. Your loved ones depend on this process, and you can also use this process to donate to charitable organizations, like the Arthritis Foundation, that rely on your generous gifts to provide for the future!

Visit for more information on planned giving, to read donor stories and to access a free wills guide!

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