The documents included in an estate plan are designed to help families and provide for families during a critical time – most commonly at the time of death or incapacitation of a loved one or family member. It’s very common for estate plans to focus on financial needs and situations, but many also feel strongly about religious values that need to be considered during this critical time.

Religious values and the communication of these religious values are also important to many people and should be given appropriate attention for anyone who is creating or updating their estate plan. The estate plan documents are one of the most effective means to communicate your religious needs and values as well as any additional cultural needs and values to family and loved ones.

Your Estate Plan as a Means of Communicating Religious Values:

  1. Provide your trustee with instructions regarding any funds to be provided for religious travel, religious education or a charitable organization, etc.
  2. Provide your trustee with instructions on accommodating specific religious principles when investing estate funds and/or managing the estate.
  3. Provide instructions designating a method of dispute resolution that is in line with religious values and beliefs to fall back on in the event that there is an argument related to the estate.
  4. Provide burial instructions that comply with specific religious and/or cultural beliefs, values and traditions.
  5. Provide instructions regarding any provisions to be made for the religious education or support for children and grandchildren.
  6. Provide any other instructions for the management of the estate in accordance with religious or cultural beliefs and values.

While the estate plan is one of the best way to ensure that religious values are thoroughly communicated to your loved ones, the success of the plan will depend upon the careful selection of a successor trustee. Many carefully ensure that any successor trustee chosen has the appropriate estate management, business experience and money management skills, but it’s equally important to remember that the successor trustee will be in charge of fostering religious and cultural values. Many choose a successor trustees who personally represents similar values in order to make the execution according to the estate plan easier and more likely to succeed. Finding an individual who has all the required skills from money management to business to estate management to religious values can be difficult. In these situations, consider providing them with additional assistance in specific areas. For instance, if your successor trustee lacks business experience and money management skills, a professional fiduciary could be appointed as co-successor in order to provide all the necessary skills and background.

For an experienced and thorough approach to Arizona estate planning please get in touch with the attorneys at SHERIDAN LAW FIRM, PLLC.

Information Not Legal Advice. This website has been prepared for general information purposes only. The information on this website is not legal advice. Legal advice is dependent upon the specific circumstances of each situation. Also, the law may vary from state-to-state or county-to-county, so that some information in this website may not be correct for your situation. Finally, the information contained on this website is not guaranteed to be up to date. Therefore, the information contained in this website cannot replace the advice of competent legal counsel licensed in your jurisdiction.