Talking to your parents about money or their mortality may make you feel uncomfortable. However, it’s important that you have some idea of what they would want in the event of a medical emergency or after they pass away. For instance, your parents may want to stay in their New York home after experiencing a fall as opposed to staying at a facility. Fortunately, there are some steps that you can take to make talking about estate planning a little easier for everyone involved.
Have a generic conversation
The first conversation that you have with your parents doesn’t need to include details such as who gets the family home or if there is a trust fund. Instead, you can simply ask as to whether they have a plan at all or what documents that they already have in place. You could also ask about their attitudes toward money and how they would want their assets to be used after they are gone.
Address their needs
Any effective estate planning conversation needs to focus on what your parents want or need. While you may want to inherit the family home, you should be willing to accept the fact that they may want to sell it. You should also be ready for the possibility that you don’t get anything at all or that you get less than your siblings. Even if you don’t receive anything from your mother or father, knowing what they want can make it easier to manage or settle their affairs.
Estate planning tends to be easier when there are open lines of communication between family members. Talking to loved ones may provide an opportunity to reset your expectations as it relates to obtaining an inheritance or alter your plan to better suit your beneficiaries.