How to talk to your family about estate planning?

Do you feel uncomfortable broaching the subject of estate planning with your parents or grandparents? It’s not just you. Many families find it challenging to have conversations regarding estate planning. Here are some tips to bring up the topic.

It’s never simple to discuss plans with surviving family members. The earlier you start talking to your family about estate planning, the sooner they will feel comfortable making the greatest decisions. Here are some pointers on how to bring up estate planning without coming off as cold.

Share your thoughts with everyone

Speak with your family as a whole before contacting your parents. Ensure that everyone is aware of the precise arrangements and is on the same page.  Share these ideas as a family before you start talking to your elderly relatives.

The basic reason wills and trusts are important

Due to ignorance, some families may not have started the estate planning process. You can be encouraging your family members to begin estate planning by explaining the fundamental justifications for doing so. There are a few common reasons why people make wills and trusts:

  1. Rather than allowing the government to take control of their inheritance, they prefer to pass their assets on to family members.
  2. They want to decide who receives what before they pass away in order to maintain harmony within the family.
  3. They want to prepare in advance for potential expenses, such as paying for a spouse’s care, both anticipated and unforeseen.
How to talk to your family about estate planning?

Acknowledge that you understand: This is their money!

As a family member, your engagement should be restricted to information sharing and preparation.

You want to ensure that your parents’ desires are honored, not impose ultimate judgment or control over the foundation your family has created. They still have the deciding vote.

Remain mindful of your elders’ needs rather than your own. They can be concerned about running out of money or starting a family conflict. Don’t take it personally if they find it awkward to discuss these things with the family. It could be preferable to suggest them see a financial adviser while still providing help on their terms.

Don’t go behind other family members’ backs!

Don’t go behind your family’s back or withhold facts when helping your parents organize their estate. Despite the fact that you could have the greatest of intentions, these acts could be seen as greedy. Maintain open channels of communication and offer everyone the opportunity to voice their concerns. Keep in mind that your role is to merely provide assistance; it is not to make choices.

Money may be the source of many disputes and family disputes, but the sooner your family starts talking about estate planning and developing a plan, the sooner your elders can unwind, enjoy their golden years in luxury, and be ready for the next chapters of their lives.