September 25, 2014

What will you leave your kids?

Some years ago, my son asked me what he would inherit from me. ☺ When I told him I planned to consume all my worldly riches before I depart this earth, he demanded that I leave him my music, which I had composed over decades.

I read a piece in the UK newspaper The Guardian the other day. It was about “the millionaires who will leave their kids nothing”. Some examples included:
• Rock star Gene Simmons, who said his kids “will never be rich off my money”
• Actor Jackie Chan, who said of his son: “If he is capable, he can make his own money. If he is not, then he will just be wasting my money”
• Andrew Lloyd Webber, who doesn’t want “a whole load of rich children and grandchildren”, and instead wants his estate to “be used as a way to encourage the arts”

In all these examples, the owners of the “money” are artists. The asset is the artist himself; when he dies, the asset dies too. None of them said anything about bequeathing a business.

If you are not an artist but own a business – and even if your kids don’t want want to work for it – one of your options is to leave them a partnership with a stronger company. That way you can provide some security for their future after you take your final farewell.

As for me: I gave my son my music anyway, so I have one problem less in life now. ☺

To read the article in The Guardian please click here.

Oldie of the week: Sade – The Sweetest Taboo (1985)

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