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Your Values. Your Vision. Your Goals.®

Family Fiduciary Secret #3:
Settle Your Estate While You're Alive

It has been said, you never really get to know someone until you share an estate with them. In today’s video, you will learn:

  • The art and science of family governance and estate planning.
  • How your unique family situation calls for your unique family solutions.
  • Why confronting anticipated estate challenges now is better than leaving them to chance later.

There is more to estate planning than instructions on how to divide your assets when you are gone. Engaging your family in the process can avoid potential pitfalls today and set them up for success well before you pass on.

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Family governance is an art form as much as anything else. When you get into extreme cases, you may need conflict resolution experts or psychologists. But in most cases the first thing that the family leaders have to decide is: “what is the level of interest and ability of the other family members”.

You know they can be interested and not have the ability. They can have the ability and not be interested. They can be interested and have the ability and have a spouse that doesn’t understand the family dynamics or is — let’s say not going in the same direction as the family. So there are all kinds of things that that can happen. Each one of these is an art form and is necessary to approach and deal with on a individual basis.

So let’s say we have a rogue daughter-in-law who just likes to make trouble and the son loves his family, but he also loves his wife. And there is some conflict that the son has, so he’s not agreeing with the rest of the family. Well, the matriarch and patriarch would have to plan around that conflict. In that case, they could actually modify the trust and the control that that particular child had in order to mitigate any challenges that might pop up because of this family situation that they have.

Money is really easy because it’s dollars and cents, but family dynamics is more fluid. So when you mix the two together, it’s always a challenge; but there’s usually a solution in there somewhere as long as the people that are in control have this idea of the big picture and they have the intent that they want to be as fair as they possibly can to everybody considering the limitations.

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