Your wealth is likely to be the culmination of a successful career, a lot of hard work, one big idea or a few ‘eureka’ moments, a great deal of talent, some astute financial decisions, and bit of good luck.

You’re lucky enough to have been born with the right set of skills and determination that have enabled you to accumulate wealth over a number of years. You’ve created it, grown it, and what’s more, kept it safe – three impressive feats that elude many people.

If you’re planning on leaving an inheritance to your children, one potentially tricky question our financial planners will ask is: “Do your children have the financial acumen to manage the wealth you plan to leave them?”

Do your children want the burden of looking after significant wealth?

It can be a complex and awkward question to answer. You may not have considered your children’s ability to manage money, or even whether they want the burden of looking after significant wealth, investments, or business interests. And it may be difficult to broach with them; if not managed in the right way, they may feel you don’t trust or value their judgement.

Stepping into your shoes to run the family business, for example, could be daunting – especially if you’ve been very successful. There’s a lot to live up to.

At Amber River, our financial planners have helped thousands of successful people in your situation. As part of your Life Landscaping process, they will suggest ways of leaving an inheritance to your descendants that help them effectively manage their money within a controlled framework that suits them.

Financial reward is just one way of demonstrating a successful life

Here are some pointers to help you broach the subject of estate planning and inheritance:

... involve the whole family

It’s essential to involve the entire family when drawing up your plans. Ask about their hopes and fears. Encourage your children to talk about their attitude to wealth and how well they will manage any money you leave them.

… avoid conflict early on

By starting these discussions well in advance of the inevitable, everyone has the chance to air their views, hopes, and plans for the future. Agree on the plan together so that everyone’s on board.

... articulate your wishes, expectations and fears

Be honest with each of them and ask them to be honest with you. You need to ensure each family member has the right tools, support, and financial framework in place to confidently manage the inheritance they will be receiving.

… children are very seldom 'just like us'

Make it clear you don’t expect them to follow in your footsteps. Their life is their own, and financial reward is just one way of demonstrating a successful life. They should be free to use the money wisely to pursue their own interests or philanthropic desires.

… if you have a family business - ensure they want to run it.

If the answer’s no, don’t force them down this route. Instead, plan a suitable business succession plan with a qualified management team to manage the day-to-day operations and growth of the business. Involve a financial planning expert to help set up a family board with share options or take steps to sell or float the business.

Everyone should feel valued and comfortable about what lies ahead

Every family is unique, and every individual within that family has a right to be heard. Plans need to be put in place to make everyone feel valued and comfortable about what lies ahead. Amber River’s independent experts offer more than just financial planning and advice; they offer a human, open and honest approach to estate planning that prioritises your family’s emotional wellbeing.

Get in touch

To speak to one of our team, arrange an appointment or find out more, call 0800 915 0000, or use our contact form here.