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Home > Blog > Estate Planning > Catalog Your Memorabilia When You Are Alive Instead Of Leaving The Task To Your Heirs

Catalog Your Memorabilia When You Are Alive Instead Of Leaving The Task To Your Heirs


You love your baseball card collection more than life itself, but your wife and children probably do not have an opinion about it.  Most likely, they zone out during family gatherings when you bring out individual cards that are relevant to the occasion and start enthusing about them to your grandchildren.  Your family does not actively detest your memorabilia collection, because you have not given them a reason to.  If you die leaving your memorabilia collection in its current state, however, it will quickly turn from a harmless quirk to a sworn enemy in your family’s estimation.  It will sow discord among your family members.  One will insist that it is worth the time and expense of getting each price appraised, while others will insist that it is better just to sell the cards to the highest bidder at a yard sale.  Even if they agree that it is worthwhile to get them appraised, the family member who ends up doing the heavy lifting to accomplish this will resent the others who just sit back and enjoy their share of the proceeds.  Fortunately, there is a simple solution to this problem, as long as you are willing to think like a Bronx estate planning lawyer.

A Simple Spreadsheet Can Help Keep the Peace Between Your Beloved Memorabilia Collection and the Family Members Who Inherit It

What do you love about each item in your memorabilia collection?  Is it the process by which it entered your life?  Is it the moment in history it represents?  Is it how much it has increased in value since you bought it at a five and dime store when you were a kid?  The piece must also be meaningful to other people, too, or else it would truly be old junk to which you have inexplicably attached sentimental value.  As much fun as it is to reminisce about the past of each memorabilia item in your collection, it is equally exciting to speculate about its future.

It doesn’t take much work to convince a memorabilia collector to research the resale prices of items similar to the ones in his collection, but if you need any more motivation to do this, consider that this information will be valuable to your heirs and to the probate court.  You should make a spreadsheet in which you catalog each item in your memorabilia collection.  Include columns about its description, the date on which you acquired it, and how much you paid.  If some of your items have authentication certificates, include a column for these, as well.  Then add a column each year in which you note the resale prices of items similar to yours.  It is the most fun way to update your estate plan every year.

Schedule a Confidential Consultation With a Bronx Estate Planning Attorney

An estate planning lawyer can help you with the fun parts of your estate plan, as well as the less fun parts.  Contact Cavallo & Cavallo in the Bronx, New York to set up a consultation.



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