I came across this amazing and unusual estate plan where the a family created a credit union for heirs only.  Forget having to worry about gifting or tax ramifications of intra-family loans this a legitimate credit union where, according to the CBS’ article,

For a $5 deposit, plus a 25-cent handling fee, you become a member of Our Family Social Credit Union IF you are a direct descendant of Manley and Lucy Williams, or are married to one.

According to the article, OFSCU has 511 members in 22 states, and shockingly only has about $500,000 in assets.  For a 50 year old credit union I would have assumed it would have more assets.

The pros and cons are pretty self evident.  You may have access to capital that otherwise you wouldn’t have since a family credit union may lend to you in times when traditional means wouldn’t touch you (unemployment and disability), however, if you fail to make a payment the entire family is likely to find out.

How I Would Create a Legacy Using a Family Credit Union

Beyond just the cool novelty of the family credit union I think it is shocking, almost deplorable, that at the current time it only has about have a million in assets under management. How I would try to grow the credit union is the same way I’d start one.

Is there an asset that provides a lump sum and costs pennies on the dollar in some cases? Life Insurance would be a perfect funding vehicle.  Think about if every current member bought a cheap policy to fund it, or if allowed, the credit union actually paid the premium almost as an “investment.”