By William S. Crews III

Passing Down Family Values BB&T Perspectives feature

What’s your family story? How does your family tell its story to your community? How you plan your estate will determine how you’re remembered after your death. Perhaps more importantly, your plan, or lack thereof, will shape the relationship your children and grandchildren have with money.

While traditional estate planning focuses on preservation of financial assets and avoidance of taxes, “legacy planning” is holistic and centered on passing down values with wealth. A legacy plan incorporates family goals with financial data and ensures the human, emotional, and non-financial needs of your family members are considered along with legal and tax concerns. Through proper planning, money becomes a powerful tool to create and sustain a legacy for the living.

Financial Details Are Crucial

Going to an attorney is just one step of a successful estate plan. Even the best, most expensive estate plans can fall short for lack of financial detail or implementation. Many people pay an attorney to draft documents and then fail to act on them.

While estate planning is important, in-depth conversations about your family’s goals and entire economic picture typically happen during the financial planning process. A financial plan shows “the numbers,” calculating what will happen when your estate plan is put into action. Through a comprehensive financial planning process, you and your advisor clarify your goals and your Wealth team offers solutions for meeting those goals, so you can begin to create and tell your family story.

Many central aspects of an estate plan are buried in the boilerplate provisions of documents or governing law. As part of the financial planning process, using a trust specialist to provide critical insights about how your estate plan will be administered so you fully understand the impact of your documents and how they will unfold is critical. Your BB&T Wealth advisor can facilitate a family meeting to help you effectively communicate your legacy intentions to family members.

Fiduciary Duties Can Stress Family Relationships

What happens if your executor or trustee makes the wrong decision? Choosing a fiduciary is one of the most important and difficult estate planning decisions you’ll make. The executor of your probate estate and trustee of your trust will determine how money is invested, how assets are distributed, and whether beneficiaries are cared for properly after your death. Many families with successful legacies name a professional executor and trustee, like BB&T, so their fiduciary remains constant throughout generations. A professional fiduciary can ensure family relationships aren’t strained by tough decisions.

How Do You Start The Planning Process?

Having a legacy plan is important, but where do you start? Families with successful legacies have established ideals and well-designed financial patterns that are carried forward through successive generations. Your BB&T Wealth team can help you with the tools you need to tell your family story, create a solid estate plan, and carry out your wishes.

By William S. Crews III

Passing Down Family Values BB&T Perspectives feature

What’s your family story? How does your family tell its story to your community? How you plan your estate will determine how you’re remembered after your death. Perhaps more importantly, your plan, or lack thereof, will shape the relationship your children and grandchildren have with money.

While traditional estate planning focuses on preservation of financial assets and avoidance of taxes, “legacy planning” is holistic and centered on passing down values with wealth. A legacy plan incorporates family goals with financial data and ensures the human, emotional, and non-financial needs of your family members are considered along with legal and tax concerns. Through proper planning, money becomes a powerful tool to create and sustain a legacy for the living.

Financial Details Are Crucial

Going to an attorney is just one step of a successful estate plan. Even the best, most expensive estate plans can fall short for lack of financial detail or implementation. Many people pay an attorney to draft documents and then fail to act on them.

While estate planning is important, in-depth conversations about your family’s goals and entire economic picture typically happen during the financial planning process. A financial plan shows “the numbers,” calculating what will happen when your estate plan is put into action. Through a comprehensive financial planning process, you and your advisor clarify your goals and your Wealth team offers solutions for meeting those goals, so you can begin to create and tell your family story.

Many central aspects of an estate plan are buried in the boilerplate provisions of documents or governing law. As part of the financial planning process, using a trust specialist to provide critical insights about how your estate plan will be administered so you fully understand the impact of your documents and how they will unfold is critical. Your BB&T Wealth advisor can facilitate a family meeting to help you effectively communicate your legacy intentions to family members.

Fiduciary Duties Can Stress Family Relationships

What happens if your executor or trustee makes the wrong decision? Choosing a fiduciary is one of the most important and difficult estate planning decisions you’ll make. The executor of your probate estate and trustee of your trust will determine how money is invested, how assets are distributed, and whether beneficiaries are cared for properly after your death. Many families with successful legacies name a professional executor and trustee, like BB&T, so their fiduciary remains constant throughout generations. A professional fiduciary can ensure family relationships aren’t strained by tough decisions.

How Do You Start The Planning Process?

Having a legacy plan is important, but where do you start? Families with successful legacies have established ideals and well-designed financial patterns that are carried forward through successive generations. Your BB&T Wealth team can help you with the tools you need to tell your family story, create a solid estate plan, and carry out your wishes.

About the Author

William S. Crews III

William S. Crews III

Senior Vice President, Personal Trust Specialist

William joined BB&T as a Trust Advisor in 2007. He holds a bachelor’s degree in finance from UNC at Wilmington and a master’s degree in trust and investment management from Campbell University. He lives in Raleigh, N.C., where he is a member of the Wake County Estate Planning Council.