Almost half of the ultra rich haven't figured out how to pass on their wealth!

Can this really be true? This interesting headline recently caught my attention. It seems that having all the money you can imagine doesn’t mean you have been able to do your estate planning – making a Will, a Trust or assigning Beneficiaries to your retirement accounts.

Why is this? There are certain universal life issues that can keep us bound, and it’s important to identify them and deal with them effectively.

  1. Family & Friends – How we direct our money or other assets can represent (to them) how much we love and care about them.

Solution: Communicate with family and friends about your estate planning and your thoughts behind it. Communication before you pass can help people to understand your thought process and to feel included in your planning. If possible, try to be fair in your giving, perhaps even giving equally to all, or at least in consideration of each individual.

  1. How will others use my assets?  Trying to control how others will use what they have been given becomes complicated. And, it really can’t be done!

Solution:  For devotees, the answer lies in the phrase “nishkam karma.” This translates as action without desire for the fruits of our actions. If we live more in the thought that all that we own has come from God, then we can more easily let go of our assets when the time comes to do so.

  1. Avoiding talking about the topic of wealth and assets – The lack of discussion about family wealth and assets, only leads to confusion and lack of awareness in people.

Solution: Inform and educate those who are interested (usually those who will inherit) about this.

  1. Lack of Planning leads to problems – The amount of confusion and emotion at the time of a death can be overwhelming. Add in a lack of estate planning and this can make things difficult for those you are leaving behind.

Solution: At the very least, make a Will and name an Executor. This person is the one who knows about your planning and your thinking behind that planning. This can be a family member, a friend, a lawyer, or a fiduciary. It does need to be someone who is willing to take on the responsibility of an Executor. They don’t need to be an expert in estate planning, but they do need to know how to ask for help and hire someone when needed.

In Divine Friendship,

Parvati Hansen
Executive Director, Ananda Janaka Foundation


Simple Steps in Estate Planning

Build Ananda Janaka's Endowment

All year end gifts go towards building the endowment fund.

Other ways to give:

  • Donor Advised Funds
  • Qualified Charitable Distribution from an IRA or other retirement accounts
  • Digital Currencies

Building Ananda's Legacy of Light Through Estate Gift Planning

Nayaswami Gyandevi McCord shares the inspiration and hope for his legacy