“Thought for the Day” #798 – by Stephen R. Elville, J.D., LL.M.

September 7, 2016

Are you charitably inclined?  If so, there is a subtle but important aspect of your estate planning that you may have overlooked – the remote contingent distribution provision in your will or trust (sometimes referred to as the “ultimate beneficiary”).  This section or provision, as the case may be, is the most overlooked, ignored, and under-considered provision in estate planning – the one that goes into effect only if there is a complete failure of beneficiaries (when there is no one left to take under the will or trust).  When this aspect of planning is ignored, wills or trusts appear impersonal.  However, when carefully considered and thoughtfully emphasized, the same documents take on a beautiful and personalized character.  Thousands of charities and public service organizations need your help.  Taking the time to customize the remote contingent distribution portion of your will or trust to include your favorite charitable organization(s) is an easy way honor and potentially assist the charitable work that is important to you.  And as you may be inclined to do so, let the charitable organization(s) of your choice know about your support.