You’ve probably seen the bumper sticker on an RV that reads: “We’re Spending Our Kids’ Inheritance.” Up front, a gray-haired driver jockeys the vehicle down the road toward a warmer climate. Grandma and Grandpa are having a ball and don’t mind poking fun at the idea that they should live conservatively so they can leave more money for their children.
Not everyone feels that way. Many seniors are eager to leave their offspring a nice nest egg. They remember the tough times they had and want to make life a little easier for the next generation. They want to pass their hard-earned wealth on to their family.
While these Christians, in thanks for the saving work of Jesus, would also like to remember the Lord’s work in their plans, they wonder, “How will giving some of the money to charity affect my family?”
Truth is, you don’t necessarily have to decide between charity and your family. Through WELS Foundation, there are ways you can give to WELS ministry without jeopardizing your family. Consider these possibilities:
Insurance. Some donors use life insurance to replace the wealth they give to charity. A second-to-die policy can be quite reasonable and provide the beneficiaries with proceeds that approximate the amount given to charity.
Charitable Remainder Trust. You can establish a charitable trust now and receive income for the remainder of your life, and then have the income directed to your children. At the end of the trust, the remainder will go to charity.
Legacy Charitable Remainder Trust. This high-sounding option simply refers to a trust that is established while you are living but funded after both parents go to be with the Lord. The trust pays income to your children for a term of up to 20 years. When the trust ends, the remainder of the trust passes to designated charitable beneficiaries such as your church and/or synod.
These special planning tools are not for everyone, to be sure. But for some, they can provide a means to benefit family members and charity without taking away from the other.
Your local WELS Christian Giving Counselor can provide further information about the above planning opportunities, as well as others. He is also able to help you orchestrate any of these gift plans by working closely with you and your professional advisors. Contact him by calling WELS Ministry of Christian Giving at 800-827-5482.
Who knows . . . maybe you’ll want to create your own bumper sticker: “Our Kids Will Get Their Inheritance When We Give It to WELS.”