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Review your estate plan during National Make-A-Will month

An older couple smiles at one another on a couch, while holding a laptop

Did you know that August is National Make-A-Will Month? Even if your estate planning documents are already in place, this is still a great time to review your will, trust, and beneficiary designations to ensure that they still capture your financial and family situation.

It's hard not to be inspired by the incredible stories of generosity that abound in our community. As Akron Community Foundation started its new fiscal year in April, we received notification of a nearly $7 million unrestricted bequest – the largest in our 68-year history – from the estate of John Charles Frentz, a devoted supporter of our Millennium Fund for Children. This planned gift will generate over $250,000 annually in additional board discretionary grantmaking in our four quarterly grant cycles.

Giving back and paying it forward

A fund at Akron Community Foundation is an ideal recipient of estate gifts through your will or trust, or through a beneficiary designation on a qualified retirement plan or life insurance policy. Bequests of qualified retirement plans – such as your IRA – can be extremely tax-efficient.

Jerry Wolf is taking full advantage of this planned giving option. Jerry has been inspiring students in the Southeast, Waterloo, and Mogadore school districts for years – first as a band director, then as a principal. His financial advisor recommended Jerry work with Akron Community Foundation to start an endowed charitable fund. Upon his passing, Jerry's traditional IRA will transfer 100% tax-free into his fund. He chose to donate the IRA to minimize tax consequences while providing a significant, perpetual source of inspiration for students in each of his three former districts. Ultimately, the fund will provide scholarships to graduating seniors.

"It's paying back and paying forward," Jerry says, "and my family will still be well taken care of."

Planned giving made easy

Akron Community Foundation makes it easy for your attorney to draft bequest terms in legal documents, including beneficiary designations of retirement plans and life insurance policies. You can also find example language in our Bequests & Memorial Giving guide. Our staff is happy to work with you and your professional advisor to discuss your goals and create a customized giving plan – all at no cost.

Even after you have executed your estate planning documents or beneficiary designations, in many cases you can still update the terms of the fund at the community foundation designated to receive the bequest upon your death. You'll also be invited to join the Edwin C. Shaw Society and meet other like-minded givers. To join our legacy society today, contact Laura Lederer and note that you have named the foundation in a planned gift.

We look forward to hearing from you and your advisors as you take this time to review your estate plan and ensure your community legacy is preserved!

This content is provided for informational purposes only. It is not intended as legal, accounting or financial planning advice.

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