Outlasting your life—defining your legacy

If you stop for a minute and think about the future—what will outlast your life? How will your legacy be defined? Legacy is a concept, for many, that is not often thought about and not always a priority. However, it plays a vital role in strategizing your financial future.

As careers and families grow and mature, there is often a fundamental shift in how your future is viewed—from focusing on the here and now (buying homes, paying for college) to focusing on how to improve the lives of others in the future.

Many clients often seek guidance on how to think through this concept of legacy. It can be difficult to grasp because there are an infinite number of solutions that can create a benefit from both an emotional- and wealth-strategy perspective. The two main problems we help clients to tackle include passing wealth effectively within their family and creating a defined charitable intent. Below are some of the key questions and considerations to evaluate alongside your unique personal financial plan, as they can all effect on your cash flow, tax, estate, and retirement plan.

Passing down wealth effectively to the next generation:

  • How much control would you like to cede?
  • When would you like to gift—during your lifetime or upon your passing?
  • How do you want to instill discipline and drive in your children?
  • What type of ownership and when should they start being involved in managing their wealth?
  • Should you think about each of the children differently?
  • What tax or estate implications are there for each of these strategies?

Gifting to charitable entities:

  • Do you want to have direct control over when and how the money is deployed?
  • How involved do you want to be with the organization?
  • Are you establishing this for multi-generational involvement?
  • What types of property should you be gifting—stocks, bonds, cash, other?
  • When is the best time to be making these charitable donations?
  • Do you want to make these gifts anonymously? 

Actively thinking about a legacy is a privilege that can be quite empowering. Many professionals, through their career, community, and family become invested in helping others. This can be a great tool for financial planning, but more importantly, can offer you the chance to help the people and causes that mean the most to you. Creating a legacy allows you to create benefits that outlast your life.


BDF LLC is a private wealth management firm. We provide personalized investment management and financial planning. We manage approximately $5.9 billion in assets for business owners, women, individuals and families, and institutions.

We also have Practice Groups that specialize in the unique needs of:

  • Attorneys
  • Divorce
  • Executives
  • Financial Professionals
  • Insurance Brokers and Agency Owners
  • Widows


This information is for educational purposes and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied upon for, accounting, legal, tax, insurance, or investment advice. This does not constitute an offer to provide any services, nor a solicitation to purchase securities. The contents are not intended to be advice tailored to any particular person or situation. We believe the information provided is accurate and reliable, but do not warrant it as to completeness or accuracy. This information may include opinions or forecasts, including investment strategies and economic and market conditions; however, there is no guarantee that such opinions or forecasts will prove to be correct, and they also may change without notice. We encourage you to speak with a qualified professional regarding your scenario and the then-current applicable laws and rules.

Different types of investments involve degrees of risk. Future performance of any investment or wealth management strategy, including those recommended by us, may not be profitable, suitable, or prove successful. Past performance is not indicative of future results. One cannot invest directly in an index or benchmark, and those do not reflect the deduction of various fees which would diminish results. Any index or benchmark performance figures are for comparison purposes only, and client account holdings will not directly correspond to any such data.

Advisory services are offered through CI Private Wealth and its affiliates, each being a registered investment adviser (“RIA”) regulated by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”). The advisory services are only offered in jurisdictions where the RIA is appropriately registered. The use of the term “registered” does not imply any particular level of skill or training and does not imply any approval by the SEC. For a complete discussion of the scope of advisory services offered, fees, and other disclosures, please review the RIA’s Disclosure Brochure (Form ADV Part 2A) and Form CRS, available upon request to the RIA and online at https://adviserinfo.sec.gov/. We also encourage you to review the RIA’s Privacy Policy and Code of Ethics, which are available upon request.

Our clients must, in writing, advise us of personal, financial, or investment objective changes and any restrictions desired on our services so that we may re-evaluate any previous recommendations and adjust our advisory services as needed. For current clients, please advise us immediately if you are not receiving monthly account statements from your custodian. We encourage you to compare your custodial statements to any information we provide to you.