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Estate planning and leaving a legacy

Some people in Wisconsin might be interested in legacy planning. While some individuals might think the term has connotations of wealth or ego, it simply is another way to think about estate planning.

Leaving a legacy behind can mean helping heirs in some way to achieve their goals. It can also mean preserving and passing on what a person has accomplished in life. Some people may be concerned that legacy planning means they are trying to control how their heirs use the assets they leave behind. However, it does not necessarily mean a person is trying to remain in control of his or her assets.

Another aspect of legacy planning is being proactive about planning how to be remembered. This does not require fame or wealth. People of all walks of life can think about the kind of legacy they would like to leave behind for their loved ones and how they might use estate planning to continue the work that is important to them.

There are a number of ways to go about legacy planning. For example, a person might want to set up a charitable trust or leave a lump sum in a will to a charitable organization. Planned giving is another way to leave a charitable legacy. There are more modest ways to leave a legacy as well. These could range from starting a fund for paying for a grandchild's education to setting up a trust to assist an heir in starting a business, buying a home and more. Trusts can be a particularly useful tool in legacy planning because they are so powerful and can be used in so many different ways. A trust can even be used to support a relative that has special needs without interfering with any government support that he or she might be receiving. An attorney may be able to help a person shape goals into legacy planning.

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