Our longtime clients Jane and Tom fit the picture of happy, healthy, retired couple. On paper, Jane and Tom had the financial means to maintain their lifestyle. They were well traveled, enjoyed time at their different homes and visits from family and friends, and were able to pursue their charitable passions. In their minds, they didn’t need to engage in the financial planning process. However, after a meeting with their estate planning attorney, they quickly called their Prio advisor to discuss how to begin effectively gifting to their extended family and their preferred charities. Perhaps it was time for a plan to better understand their giving capacity.
During this different type of meeting with Jane and Tom, we didn’t speak of investment returns but rather had a frank discussion about their family dynamics. Their granddaughter recently entered a private school to help with her learning disabilities. Seeing the profound results, Jane wanted to start paying for their granddaughter’s tuition to take some of the burden off her son and daughter-in-law. However, Jane wanted to be equitable for all six grandchildren, and wanted to better understand the impact to their personal finances if they paid for high school and college tuition. Meanwhile, Tom had begun to spend his extra time as a board member for a climate change foundation, something he was always passionate about. He wanted to better understand how he could gift effectively to this cause and others, both now and in the future.
During our conversation, Jane and Tom’s Prio relationship team was able to leverage our planning tools and past experiences to simulate a tuition projection for their grandchildren and demonstrate the minimal financial impact to them. Prio suggested consulting with their adult children before engaging in any asset and account movement to be sure the whole family was on the same page. Jane was thrilled to see how quickly this brought clarity to her giving desires, and really appreciated our willingness to bring their children into the discussion in a strategic way. While Jane was glowing about helping their children, Tom was equally as excited as we discussed the ability to gift complex assets he had been holding on their balance sheet for quite some time. Prio was able to find a suitable way to contribute these assets to his Donor Advised Fund for future grants, and put them in a favorable tax situation.