Leaving a Legacy Plan

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Leaving a Legacy Plan

We all want to live a significant, successful life. Yet how many of us realize that our important, positive contributions can last long after we are gone?

Two things are certain: death and taxes. Some of us grasp that reality early, so we plan for it by creating wills, living trusts and estate plans. Others deny this reality and leave their heirs with no guidance as to the distribution of their assets but only perplexing questions, added stress and messy finances when they pass away.

The truly farsighted among us don’t just plan for the disposition of our finances but opt for a full-fledged legacy plan.

How does a legacy plan differ from an estate plan? An estate plan determines a destiny for your assets. A legacy plan does that and more.  Think of a legacy plan as a way to pass along your wealth and the things that money cannot buy – your family’s values and ideals.

A legacy plan can convey your values and wishes to the following matters:

  • The distribution of the estate – selecting a steward, showing that person how these assets are to be managed according to your values and outlook.
  • A lasting legacy - through charitable trusts and bequests with beneficiaries closely aligned to your personal values and objectives.
    • The future of a family business – you can share the knowledge only the owner and founder has, you can establish who will own it after you, who will manage it and who will benefit financially from it.



Julie O'Rourke, CFA, CFP®
Julie O'Rourke, CFA, CFP®

A legacy plan communicates more than financial details – it expresses your values, your final wishes and the life lessons you want to pass along. It conveys knowledge that may make things smoother for your heirs and your company at a time of grief. It imparts wisdom that your successor may use to guide inherited assets, so the assets endure for more than a generation. Finally, a legacy plan allows you to continue to support charities that were important to you during your life time.


Julie O'Rourke, CFA, CFP® is the Executive Vice President and Senior Trust & Investment Division Manager at Alpine Trust & Investment Group.

Investment and insurance products are: not FDIC insured; not guaranteed; and, may be subject to investment risk, including possible loss of principal.