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Can IONS help me get my estate planning done?

Yes—for instant help, click on any of the clear and concise estate planning briefing videos below.

Willis Harman

“Only one thing is essential—the inner decision to follow a deep sense of purpose and to consider all else feedback from a basically friendly universe.”
–Willis Harman


Estate Planning Videos

The following ten-minute videos by IONS planned giving specialist Phil Murphy provide clear explanations of estate-planning basics: wills, probate, living trusts, the role of trustees, health care decisions, and estate tax among them.

Why Write an Estate Plan?

Without a written estate plan, you may have given control to the Probate Court to distribute your estate according to an impersonal formula, and to appoint someone to care for your minor children whom you would never have chosen. Also, a judge may have to decide what health care you should or should not receive if you cannot speak for yourself. A written estate plan gives you control over these and other crucial decisions.


Pros and Cons of Probate

Having a written will does not avoid probate, a court procedure that distributes certain things you own to others according to your wishes. What are the benefits of probate? What are its drawbacks?


Do you Need a Living Trust?

Revocable living trusts allow you to avoid probate. They also allow someone to step in and manage some of your most important possessions if you can’t. But do you need one?


Picking the Right Trustee

Living trusts provide for someone you’ve chosen to step in and manage your living trust if you can’t. This video will increase the odds of your picking the right person for this crucial role.


Controlling End-of-Life Care

Technology can keep us alive even if we’ve lapsed into a permanent vegetative state. An Advance Health Care Directive allows you to control the level of treatment you want or don’t want under those circumstances.


Estate and Gift Tax

We understand income tax. But what are estate tax and gift tax? This video clarifies this mysterious world and allows you to know if you’ll pay thousands…or nothing.

More Videos

To see more audio/visual presentations created for IONS by Phil Murphy, click here. Additional topics include "Doing Well Doing Good I, II & III," "A Gift That Pays You," and "Personalizing Your Plans."

Free Estate Planning Kit

You can also ask for our free Estate Planning Kit, which includes

  • a readable and authoritative introduction to wills, living trusts, and basic estate planning
  • an Estate Planning Inventory form to help you get a clear perspective on the worth of your estate
  • instructions for your family to help them through a difficult time
  • information on how to include IONS in your estate plan

Effective estate planning usually takes time, effort, and a good attorney. In the end, though, your plan will allow your family to avoid the delay, dissension, and needless expense that often occur when a loved one dies without a documented will. Once you have taken care of your family's needs, please consider a thoughtful bequest to IONS.

To order your Estate Planning Kit, contact Tiffany Mitchell (707)-779-8230 or at

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