National Estate Planning Week – October 16-22, 2023: Remember Sherman College in Your Estate Plan

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National Estate Planning Week is observed each year in the third week of October. It is a time dedicated to inspiring individuals to proactively safeguard their wealth, secure their family’s future, and facilitate a seamless transfer of assets to future generations.

What is estate planning?

Estate planning is managing and distributing assets, debts, and healthcare preferences in the event that you are incapacitated or pass. Because most chiropractors own their practice, it is crucial to plan ahead to secure a financial legacy.

Why develop an estate plan?

Simply put, an estate plan allows you to have control over what happens to your belongings, finances and even your healthcare decisions when you are no longer able to make those choices yourself.

  1. Protect Your Practice: If you own a chiropractic practice, a well-crafted estate plan can ensure a smooth transition of your practice to a trusted colleague or family member, minimizing any disruption in patient care.
  2. Financial Security: Estate planning allows you to specify how your assets will be distributed, minimize the tax burden on your beneficiaries, and ensure they are financially secure.
  3. Healthcare Decisions: With a healthcare directive and power of attorney, you can designate a trusted individual to make medical decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so. Once done, be sure to give your family or a trusted colleague access to the documents.
  4. Caring for Loved Ones: Estate planning allows you to provide for your family’s future, including their education, healthcare, and general well-being.
  5. Exposure to Legal Liabilities and Disregard for Your Wishes: Without a well-thought-out estate plan, the distribution of your assets may be subject to the default rules of your jurisdiction, which may not align with your wishes, lead to disputes among your heirs, and may risk unnecessary legal complications.

Estate Planning Checklist for Chiropractors

Start your estate planning today by following these critical steps.

  1. Consult a Professional: Begin by seeking advice from an experienced estate planning attorney so they can navigate complex legal aspects for you and tailor a plan to your personal and clinical needs.
  2. Create a Will: It is critical that you have an official will, which is a legal document outlining your wishes regarding asset distribution and guardianship of minor children (if applicable) should you become incapacitated or pass.
  3. Establish a Trust: Depending on your financial situation and goals, a trust can protect your assets, help avoid probate, and ensure efficient distribution to your beneficiaries. A trust can also include legacy gifts to non-profit organizations such as Sherman College of Chiropractic.
  4. Designate Beneficiaries: Review and update your beneficiary designations on bank accounts, retirement plans, and life insurance policies to fulfill your legacy.
  5. Healthcare Directives: Draft a living will and assign a healthcare proxy to honor your medical preferences.
  6. Review and Update Regularly: Life circumstances change, so it’s critical to review your estate plan regularly to ensure it is current and remains aligned with your goals.
  7. Communicate Your Plan: Share your estate plan with family members, beneficiaries, and trusted individuals who ensure your wishes are carried out.

Why Include Sherman College of Chiropractic in your Estate Plan?

As a non-profit organization, Sherman College depends on gifts of all sizes to positively impact our students, programs and to fulfill our mission of “Adjusting the World for a Better Future.” By including Sherman in your estate plan, you will support chiropractic education in perpetuity. Here’s how your bequest can make a difference:

  1. Support Education and Research: Your donations help train future chiropractors and fund research initiatives to advance chiropractic knowledge and improve patient care.
  2. Perpetuate Philanthropic Goals, Values, and Beliefs: Your gift will help ensure the profession and Sherman College thrive for generations.
  3. Honor Your Connection to Sherman College of Chiropractic: As a friend, alumnus, faculty, staff, administrator of Sherman College or a patient in our Chiropractic Health Center, your donations will help the college thrive for years to come.
  4. Have peace of mind: know that your charitable contribution can lead to potential tax benefits for your heirs.
  5. Leave a Lasting Legacy: Your will can support Sherman College, fund scholarships, and build infrastructure to serve the future needs of the college.
  6. Becoming a Beacon of Inspiration: “It is better to light one candle, Than to curse the darkness.” B.J. Palmer.

National Estate Planning Week is a proactive way to take control of your financial and legal affairs to ensure the protection of your practice, your family’s future, and your own well-being. It’s never too late to start, so begin your estate plan this year during National Estate Planning Week. Take an important step towards securing your legacy and a bright future for your loved ones.

For more information about including Sherman College in your estate planning, please visit or contact Dr. Russell Goff, development coordinator, at