Celebrating 15 Years of National Estate Planning Awareness Week: October 16-22, 2023

Posted October 2023

If you are among the one-third of American adults who have at least a basic estate plan in place, you are to be congratulated! If you are not, now is the perfect time to create (or review) your estate plan to both ensure you will have enough retirement income to sustain your preretirement standard of living and to preserve assets built over a lifetime for family, other heirs, and charitable organizations.

In 2008 the U.S. House of Representatives voted to designate the third week of each October as National Estate Planning Awareness Week. In 2023 that week will encompass October 16-22. During that period, lawyers, accountants, financial planners, charitable gift planning officers, and other professionals are encouraged to reach out to every American family with a reminder about the need for estate planning.

Estate planning applies to nearly all adults who own property of any kind. At the very least, they need a last will and/or a trust to formalize their wishes on how their assets are to be distributed upon their death, a durable power of attorney assigning an agent to manage financial affairs if they are unable to do so, a durable power of attorney for health care assigning an agent in the event of incapacitation, a directive to physicians describing the conditions under which life is to be sustained, and completed beneficiary-designation forms stating current wishes regarding distributions of insurance and retirement-fund proceeds. Complex and larger estates will, of course, require additional planning devices to accomplish objectives and minimize taxes.

On this forthcoming National Estate Planning Awareness Week, we encourage you to consider your estate plan. Possibly, you have long intended to create an estate plan but have procrastinated. Or possibly, you have an existing plan, but you haven’t reviewed it for several years—and, meanwhile, there have been many changes in your situation.

In either case, you may discover that you are now able to make an estate gift to us. It might be a bequest of a specific dollar amount or a percentage of whatever may be left after providing adequately for your loved ones. It might be a life-income plan where you and/or your heirs receive life income from your gift and then the remainder is used for our mission.

Please contact us if we can be of assistance. National Estate Planning Awareness Week is a perfect time to ensure financial wellness for yourself, your loved ones, and the organizations that embody your values.

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