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Who gets the money when you're gone?
Old 09-05-2015, 01:23 PM   #1
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Who gets the money when you're gone?

1) Who are you planning to leave your money to when you (and DW if applies) are gone? Kids or other close blood relatives? Friends or more distant relatives? Charities, faith based organizations, other?

2) Do you have a minimum target for the estate you plan to leave behind?

Based on the occasional net worth and SWR poles here, it seems like there is a reasonable possibility, even probability, that most here will leave a non-trivial estate. I'm curious as to who you feels is deserving of your estate when you are all done.

As for us, we have direct siblings and faith based organizations as future recipients. We don't have a minimum estate we are trying to leave. Our legacy fully participates in all the upside and downside. We'll spend it all if needed; there no way I'd w*rk even another day to do otherwise.

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Old 09-05-2015, 01:36 PM   #2
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I don't expect to have much to leave but it'll all go to the closest living relative(s). Right now my Mom is the beneficiary of all my accounts. If she passes it goes to my Dad then my Brother then I guess it'll be split between my surviving cousins. My hope is that I have no more than small 5-figures left when I die. If I have more than that then I worked more than I needed to.

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Old 09-05-2015, 01:38 PM   #3
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No plan to leave a legacy, but my general desire to be secure and avoid running out of money makes it very likely I will have enough left over to set up both my kids as ER if they want that. I'm not telling them. I want them to make their own way in the world, and if they get a pleasant surprise, then so much the good. If they choose to disclaim then it cascades to a bunch of more distant relatives.

I'm keeping an open mind about charitable bequests. I have interests that could be supported by some giving, but I'm more likely to want to support them while I'm around to see how well the money gets used. Maybe I'll change my mind later in life.
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Old 09-05-2015, 01:45 PM   #4
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Our local ASPCA gets everything when we are gone.
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Old 09-05-2015, 01:45 PM   #5
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In the present and most likely situation I'll try in the end to funnel most of my assets to two of my nieces. If there is anything left.

No kids as you'd guess.
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Old 09-05-2015, 01:45 PM   #6
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Relatives/friends and/or the kids of friends.
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Old 09-05-2015, 01:46 PM   #7
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I plan on leaving it all to my church. I figure that way it will do the most good. The way I look at it is God gave it to us so I am just giving it back. I could give it to relatives but they have plenty and have insulted us for years. So I took that as a sign from God to give it to him. The relatives have told us several times that they "would" be in our will. Crazy but true. This is some of the crazy stuff that can happen to you when you have no kids. Warning to all the young folks. I did not see this when I was young.
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Old 09-05-2015, 02:41 PM   #8
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My half goes to assorted charities. My DH's half was being split between charities and his (really nice) nephews, but now he has decided that he wants to drop the charities and divide his half between the neohews that we like and their irritating, prosperity gospel, holy-roller cousins. I'm not expending one iota of effort to see that gets done. He'll change his tune the next time they or their father comes mooching around for money anyway.
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Old 09-05-2015, 02:42 PM   #9
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If I had my druthers, we'd leave a boat-load to the kids. My daughter is in her late 30's and my son in his late 20's. They are both college educated, hard-working, productive individuals. She has her MBA, he has his engineering degree. I don't think it would go to their heads. Unfortunately, we don't have a boat load of money now, and with the market misbehaving, it's unlikely that we ever will. But I would if I could make my children's lives more comfortable if at all possible.
And whatever your labors and aspirations in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.- Desiderata by Max Ehrmann
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Old 09-05-2015, 02:54 PM   #10
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Two trusts, one for each set of my siblings' kids. And specific small bequests to relatives and friends. We also added a codicil for a generous stipend for a ten year period for our roommate to continue to live in our home and care for the animals for their lifespan, then assist the executor, my BIL, in clearing out the house and preparing it for sale.
That's if we die anytime soon. Later, who knows if we will spend it all before we die. I think wills and such should be updated at least once a decade, sooner if things in your life change significantly.
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Old 09-05-2015, 02:55 PM   #11
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If there is anything left it goes to my son with my expressed request to spend on my grand children's college education.
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Old 09-05-2015, 02:55 PM   #12
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No kids, so if there's anything left it'll go to DW's nephew and niece, in part because they are also our POA and health care directive decision-makers (secondary to us of course). That can be a lot of work and time and they're solid folks. I do have a niece that I would entrust it to but with her health issues it is quite possible that I will outlive her.

It won't be enough for anyone to retire on but it would give them a solid boost.
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Old 09-05-2015, 03:06 PM   #13
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It is very likely that the young wife will survive me, so she gets everything and can subsequently do anything she wants with it. If, however, I am the one left to decide, I think I will give it to my favorite childless nephew, with the expectation (unenforceable, of course) that he will do the same when the time comes.

My ultimate vision is that there will always be someone in the family with money, who can act as the ultimate backstop when times get bad (as I have done a time or two), but it should never be those with children, because they will dissipate it.
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Old 09-05-2015, 03:12 PM   #14
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If I die first, DH gets it, if he dies first, I get it, if we're both dead it's split among the 2 kids, even steven.

Our plans are even if we spend down to zero and croak, the kids will at least get the house. It's not a fancy house, but it's paid for and this is SoCal - so it's worth a chunk of change and more than most estates.

But if either of us go into long term care - it's our "self insurance" to cover that expense... so the kids would be out of luck.
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Old 09-05-2015, 03:13 PM   #15
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DW obviously, but after that DD and DGD (plus future additions). I would like to leave at least as much to them as my in-laws left to us (adjusted for inflation, of course), but we'll have to see what the future holds. I'm planning to do the skip-a-generation Roth beneficiary thing (see Ed Slott Stretch IRA) with the grandkids if it's still available, leaving the rest to DD. I've got some estate planning to do to make it all airtight in case of divorce, etc. It's in the list for next year.
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Old 09-05-2015, 03:16 PM   #16
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1. Parents and sibling. Depending on how much is left, contingent beneficiaries in order of priority are godchildren, niblings, charitable foundation for my former high school and some local charities.

2. Not actually planning on leaving a legacy but I'm targeting to have around $500K set aside for LTC and final medical expenses. If I don't use it up, then lucky for my beneficiaries.
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Old 09-05-2015, 03:53 PM   #17
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My son (only child) is my only heir and executor according to my will. I have left a separate letter to him asking him to give $10,000 each to 4 friends if what is left at my demise supports this bequest. I hope they will take a wonderful trip with the money, but it would be theirs to do with as they wish. My successor heir is my only sister. I am the guardian of a disabled cousin who is six years my senior but she has plenty of money in her trust to support her the rest of her life.
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Old 09-05-2015, 04:04 PM   #18
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Currently, counting both assets and insurance, it basically looks like:
35% to Mom
25% to Dad
10% each to brother, sister, and brother's two kids
With small amounts (<5% total) in there to a few other people

However I am still young/single/childless, and my parents are old, so if I live as long as I expect it will either go to a spouse/kids or to my niece and nephew. The accounts expected to grow the biggest (TSP, IRA, other investments) are all designated to them.

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Old 09-05-2015, 04:29 PM   #19
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I'll probably leave it all to DH's next wife.
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Old 09-05-2015, 04:48 PM   #20
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DH, then DS. If they pass before me, there are a huge number of musical and theater non-profits in our area that need and deserve help. We will need to modify our wills to make that happen though.

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