5 critical questions before leaving an inheritance

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Although leaving your wealth to the next generation sounds like a worthy goal, many Americans struggle with how much to leave and how to do it.

In a recent survey of high net worth parents, 91% of respondents said they plan to leave most of their wealth to family members, while 46% are concerned about giving too much money, according to the report this year from Merrill Lynch’s Private Banking and Investment Group.

The findings reveal that most people want to use their wealth to positively influence the lives of relatives. But 66% worry about the negative impact that gifted assets could have on an individual or group.

So, how much is too much to leave as an inheritance?

The answer, like many issues involving family and money, is not a simple one.

“The question of deciding how much to leave as an inheritance is a very personal one,” explains Paul Jacobs, chief investment officer at Palisades Hudson Financial Group in Atlanta.

Here, experts offer factors to consider when deciding how much to leave in an inheritance, and the best ways to pass along wealth to family.

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