In Zambia the HIV/AIDS epidemic has resulted in many single female-headed households. Strong patriarchal laws and customs prevent widows and children from maintaining economic assets. This study examines the impact of a video-based motivational intervention promoting future planning in 1,504 HIV-infected couples in Lusaka, Zambia. Following a group video session, couples randomized to the motivational arm could choose to write a will, identify a guardian for their children and make financial plans. Desirable behaviours modelled in the motivational video were measured at quarterly intervals for a year and compared in intervention and control arms. Demographic measures including age, income and educational status were not associated with planning behaviours. Participation in the intervention was associated with will writing (23% versus 5%) and naming a guardian (32% versus 17%) but not with other planning behaviours. The study demonstrates the ability of motivational messages integrated into HIV VCT to encourage future planning behaviour and points to the need to expand existing HIV and VCT services to meet other non-health needs of those living with HIV.