The Cycle of the Gift: Family Wealth and Wisdom

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Family giving is more than estate planning and tax accounting. As high-net-worth individuals have discovered, gifts, once given, take on a life of their own. It is not unusual for a well-intentioned gift to have a destructive influence on its recipient's life, or to give rise to feelings and responses that can undermine relationships, alienate family members, and, in the most extreme cases, tear families asunder.

This book is about "giving well"--ensuring that your wealth will have the most positive effects on the lives of its recipients and their families, as well as on your own life. As the authors explain, giving, if handled correctly, offers a great opportunity to gain deeper insight into recipients as individuals and their needs, and to come to a heightened awareness of your own needs and expectations. It can improve communication within families, strengthen bonds, and promote the well-being and growth of all involved. And, when done well, legacy giving, like a stone dropped into still water, can have a ripple effect that will continue to expand and grow in positive ways.

Drawing upon their unique talents and professional experiences, the authors combine profound insights into the psychological and spiritual aspects of giving with practical step-by-step advice on how to do it well. For ease of understanding, they have focused on three crucial dimensions of giving:

The Who of Giving--understanding the needs and expectations of all of those most involved in family giving, especially the recipients and givers, including parents, grandparents, spouses, and trustees

The How of Giving--maintaining the delicate balance between many givers' needs for control and the recipients' need for freedom

The What and Why of Giving--knowing the gift options available to you--from money to business interests to values and rituals--including the authors' "family bank" concept, a model that combines loans, trusts, and outright gifts and offers a framework and set of practices for long-term family growth

Read "The Cycle of the Gift" and learn how to tap the full power of legacy giving as a force for growing the material and spiritual well-being of your heirs, their families, and their communities.

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James E. Hughes, Jr.
Bloomberg Press
Publication Date:
November 6, 2012