Leave a Legacy
JIM & MARY
CASE STUDY #3
78 & 77
Putting together a game plan that will help to protect the family should anything happen in the future.
Jim handles the investments and Mary takes care of the day to day balancing of the checkbook. It has always been this way and it's been a good way to play to each others' strengths.
Last month Jim was diagnosed with prostate cancer and after sitting with many doctors, he understands that Mary may have to have help in the future and he doesn't want to put that pressure on the kids.
Jim has done a great job of managing their investments on his own and doesn't like the idea of handing over the reigns to just anyone that doesn't have a similar philosophy. He is also concerned about taxes and estate planning since he doesn't have much experience with either of these things.
The obstacle isn't overcoming an imminently bad situation, but in preparing for a more manageable situation for the next 15 years and being secure in having a trusted advisor for the family.
So what's the challenge?
Finding someone that can help support current investments while being supportive of future surviving spouse
Managing tax planning and understanding the implication on all accounts and assets
Having a sustainable legacy plan that not only supports spouse but also passes down to heirs appropriately
Having a game plan to cover future medical costs efficiently
Jim has a less than ideal timeline and the prognosis is fairly good, but he knows that things could change at any time and working on a plan now will give him more serenity in the future which will allow him to focus on his health.
Jim knew at some point he would need to enlist help, but this was sooner than expected. He decided to seek help from a financial planner that could help explain things to his wife who never was interested in investments and support her and his children in the future.
In this situation he will need to have tax accountants and estate planning attorneys involved to best serve him. Because they had already engaged with an estate planning attorney, he is happy to jointly collaborate on the plan.
When Jim first began thinking about this, he assumed his son would help his wife manage the investments. But he had seen families become torn apart by siblings feeling like they were cut out and realized an objective third party offers a lot in keeping the peace. He wanted someone that would help be the guide to his family and look over them like he had his whole life.
A game plan was put into place for Jim and Mary that offered the following:
A retirement plan that showed how much money they would need overall to fund ongoing medical costs.
A transition plan for all their investment accounts and explanation on how to best structure them in a tax-efficient manner.
A review of pension and social security benefits for a surviving spouse.
Estate planning strategies for both death and incapacitation.
A legacy plan that took into consideration Jim's future wishes in keeping his memory.