I cut my teeth practicing law in a small town in West Tennessee. One of my more memorable clients was the County Animal Shelter. The facility was named after Ms. Parker, who as part of her estate plan bequeathed a large sum of money to the shelter for which she volunteered during her lifetime. When Ms. Parker passed away, the shelter received the donation and they were able to greatly improve their facilities. There was a catch, however. A stipulation to the donation was that anytime the well known “town drunk” was arrested and sent to the drunk-tank, his dog was allowed to have free room and board at the shelter. And this happened fairly regularly. Everyone knew the dog, and everyone knew who set up this convenient and safe system for that dog. As a result, Ms. Parker’s legacy thrived just as that dog did.
You can’t make this stuff up. And you can’t make something like this happen if you don’t commit your wishes to writing. An estate plan is so much more than just dividing up your assets. If you wish, it can be about creating a better world through your actions and fostering the values that are important to you. A recent article in the Denver Post further discusses the notion of how estate planning for charity can shape your legacy.
If you would like more information on how to create your legacy or if you would like to discuss your estate planning needs, please contact our Business Law Group partner, David A. Closson at [email protected].