No Heirs?

A childless Washington couple recently left 1.1 million to the children’s hospital in Portland, OR. They had lived a frugal life and managed to save enough to give $5,000 each to a nephew, three nieces and four non-relatives. The money from their house and everything else went to the hospital. Hospital officials told the Columbian newspaper it’s not unusual to receive bequests from childless donors. It’s certainly a worthy cause.

If you don’t have children—or you do and you don’t like them–you’re free to leave your worldly goods to whomever you choose. In my case, there probably won’t be much money. I have already named libraries for the books and needy music students for the instruments and sheet music. But it’s fun to think about where you might spread your life savings. Favorite relatives or friends? The humane society? The Friday-night-beer-and-Pizza-Group? I made that one up.

Think about it. Nobody wants to ponder their inevitable death, but if you’ve got to go and you can’t take it with you, who should have it? It’s your money. You can be as generous or as selfish as you choose. Maybe you want to blow it all on the grandest funeral the world has ever seen. Go for it. Or maybe you want to help the homeless, victims of abuse, or folks with incurable illnesses. It’s your choice.

Whatever you decide, just make sure you put it in writing or the government will dole it out to the closest relatives they can find.

One thought on “No Heirs?

  1. Oh, another one of my favourite subjects. I know a lot of people don’t LIKE the inevitability of their demise, but… advance estate and funeral planning help the grieving loved ones. Planning a funeral while in the midst of heartbreaking grief is a dreadful task.


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