Take Time This Holiday Season to Discuss Estate Planning

Posted by Martin Heller Potempa & Sheppard, PLLC on December 16, 2019

The holiday season should be a time of celebration and enjoying the company of loved ones. But this year, you may want to consider having a frank conversation with your children about your estate planning wishes

Yahoo Finance offers the following tidbits of advice when having these important conversations with your family. 

Estate Planning: Be specific, but not about numbers

It’s important to be honest about your wishes and assets with your adult children. However, you don’t want to give them concrete numbers about inheritance they may receive. Mostly because you do not know how long you or your spouse will live. This may change the amount of inheritance left to them, depending on your end of life care needs. 

You also don’t want to disclose large sums of money to your children, as it may change their life plans. Children may adjust their quality of living in thinking money is coming their way or will have you change your life choices to ensure the amount stays large. We never hope for that behavior from our own, but anything can happen. 

Determine which child will make decisions on your behalf.

Determining who will make your healthcare and financial decisions for you if you no longer can,  can be a difficult decision. This child will need to have access to important information such as legal documents, passwords, and financial data. 

You’ll also want to discuss what your end of life choices are for when the time comes. Having that child know your wishes for food, water, and life support along with a signed health care power of attorney document can make the end of life process less stressful for them when the time comes. 

Let them know about inheritance when estate planning

While your finances become theirs at the end of your life, you’ll need to know how you want that inheritance to be distributed. A trust can protect your assets and limit drama after you are gone. 

Talk about your insurance coverage.

Your end of life care will change depending on your finances, unfortunately. You’ll want to let your children know what type of coverage you have and what will and will not be covered for your end of life care. This may impact more than you think when it comes to your estate planning wishes. 

Let them ask you questions.

You’ve been honest with them, let them process and ask you questions, too. The more they know the less likely for internal family conflict when you are no longer able to answer the questions yourself. 

Get an Estate Planning Lawyer with your best interests in mind.

Making your end of life plans is a lot to handle emotionally for you and your children. You’ll need the advice of a seasoned and well-trusted estate planning lawyer to guide you and your loved ones through the process. 

Plan for the future today.

It’s time to plan for your future. At Martin Heller Potempa & Sheppard, PLLC, our estate planning lawyers will guide you through the process with the compassion needed. With years of experience in estate planning and administration, we know how to best protect your assets and prepare for the unknown.

If you’re ready to create a trust, set up a power of attorney, or write your will, we’re here to help. Contact us at Martin Heller Potempa & Sheppard, PLLC now for more information.

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