From One Generation to the Next
We all want our hard work and efforts to provide a better life for ourselves and our families. But we also need to secure a stable future for our loved ones. One way to assure that happens is by having a will in place. A will is a legal document that allows you to choose who should receive your assets after you are gone.
While most of us realize that we should have a will, close to half of all Americans do not have one. Without a will, the state will ultimately make your decisions for you, regardless of what you may have wanted.
Planning your will
When you begin planning your will, write down the names of the people you want to designate as beneficiaries. Make a list of your assets and decide how you want to divide them. Sometimes choosing percentages rather than dollar amounts for gifts is helpful because the value of your assets is likely to change either up or down.
Put your wishes in writing
Remember to include any treasured items you want to pass along. Don’t assume that just because you said you want a specific item to go to a certain person, that your wish will be honored. Put your instructions in writing.
You may want to include charitable donations in your will. Not only will you be helping the charities you choose, your estate may also benefit through tax savings. If there is anything left once you have taken care of family and loved ones, you may consider including the University to support the programs you specify. And remember, by including The University of Alabama in your will, you are eligible to become a member of The Denny Society. “I am honored to be a member of The Denny Society,” said Gene Hamby of Muscle Shoals, Alabama. “I enjoy being on campus for the biennial celebrations and reminiscing with old friends, as well as making new ones.”
I already have a will
If you already have a will, you can make desired amendments to it by adding a codicil. A codicil is simply an addition to a will that modifies it or revokes part of it.
If your life changes through marriage, the addition of children or grandchildren, or the death of loved ones, you may want to make sure those changes are reflected in your existing will. It is important to always seek the advice of an attorney to help in carrying out your wishes.
Did you know that you can make charitable donations to The University of Alabama and still maintain a healthy financial outlook for your family? With careful planning, your estate might even benefit from tax savings.
You could name The University of Alabama as the beneficiary of a retirement account, thereby donating the assets when you no longer need them. Many friends of The University of Alabama have bank accounts, CDs, or brokerage accounts naming the University as beneficiary. The process can be as simple as contacting your bank or other financial representative and adding a “pay on death” (P.O.D.) or a “transfer on death” (T.O.D.) provision. You retain control of the funds during your lifetime. Afterward, the University receives what is left in the account to support programs at UA that you specify.
You might also considering naming UA as a beneficiary of all or a portion of a life insurance policy’s benefits. Contact us and we will be glad to provide additional information without obligation.
If you have questions, call us and we will be glad to answer them.